Bulgaria and the USA stand firm in their Support for Ukraine
Bulgaria and the USA stand firm in their support for Ukraine. This is stated in a joint statement published by the US State Department after the second session of the Strategic Dialogue between Bulgaria and the US. The delegations, led by Foreign Minister Mariya Gabriel and Senior Political Adviser Derek Chollet, held talks in Washington.
"Russia's unprovoked and unjustified war against Ukraine grossly violates international law, threatens the rules-based international order and undermines the stability of Europe, including the security of the Black Sea region. The two countries share a common goal: for a secure, prosperous and connected Black Sea region, free from threats to territorial integrity, from economic coercion and malicious influence", the announcement also stated.
Bulgaria and the USA agreed to deepen cooperation in defense and security.
"Taking into account the strategic position of Bulgaria in the region and in NATO, we are increasing our partnership in the field of defense with the aim of improving the security of the Balkans and the Black Sea region, including through our joint participation in the multinational NATO battle group in Bulgaria," was also stated in the statement. Strong cooperation between the two countries strengthens operational compatibility within NATO, favors the modernization of Bulgaria's defense and further develops the country's defense sector.
Expanding cooperation in energy and economy was discussed.
"Both countries note Bulgaria's significant efforts to diversify its energy sector and further reduce its dependence on Russian energy resources. Bulgaria and the US are working together to create a more flexible energy market, expand cooperation in the field of nuclear energy for civilian purposes and accelerating the transition to low-carbon and renewable energy sources. The two countries plan to expand bilateral trade and investment ties by promoting innovation, introducing effective management of new technologies and promoting a favorable business environment, and will further discuss how to expand cooperation in the field of emerging technologies and space policy. Bulgaria and the US also intend to prioritize the screening of foreign direct investment to ensure their national security," the announcement states.
Gabriel and Chollet commented on the defense of democracy and strengthening the rule of law.
"Recognizing the importance of deepening and expanding our cooperation in the fight against foreign disinformation and propaganda, we signed a Memorandum of Understanding to counter foreign information manipulation. We are working to achieve concrete and practical results that will help preserve democracy by countering the growing threat of foreign malign influence and state-sponsored disinformation. We also emphasized our continued efforts in strengthening the rule of law and ensuring the independence of the judiciary and plan to continue our joint efforts to eradicate the scourge of human trafficking”.
Sofia and Washington agreed to expand bilateral ties.
"Bulgaria and the United States note the deepening contacts between the citizens of the two countries and are committed to deepening these contacts through academic, cultural and professional exchanges. Both countries welcome Bulgaria's progress toward inclusion in the Visa Waiver Program and the United States reaffirms its support for the continued efforts of the country to meet the legal requirements for admission to the program."
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mariya Gabriel also met with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. The bilateral meeting took place in Washington within the second session of the strategic dialogue between Bulgaria and the USA.
"Support, coordination and a common response to challenges" - these are the messages from my meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. "Thank you for the warm welcome as Deputy Prime Minister of Bulgaria. Our country is a strategic partner, an important ally and friend," commented Mariya Gabriel.
"The successful holding of the second session of the strategic dialogue between Bulgaria and the USA and our common priorities based on democratic values and compliance with the international legal order are encouraging. The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between Bulgaria and the USA to counter the foreign manipulation of information is of key importance in an environment of intensifying hybrid attacks and disinformation", stressed the Deputy Prime Minister.
"In a constructive and benevolent spirit, within the framework of the strategic dialogue, we identified common approaches to global and regional problems. We also have concrete intentions to expand cooperation in the fields of economy, innovation and energy. We will also work together to protect democracy and strengthen the rule of law. Bilateral relations will aim to benefit the citizens of both countries," Mariya Gabriel summarized.
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