Bulgaria Braces for New Round of Mass Protests
The second nationwide protest rally against the skyrocketing fuel prices is being held in Bulgaria Sunday and starts at 1 pm, organizers announce.
The demonstrators insist that all political parties in the country take urgent measures to immediately tame the prices and bring them down to "reasonable" levels by reducing the profits of the Lukoil Bulgaria company, owner of the only oil refinery in the Black Sea city of Burgas.
Lukoil and the cabinet signed last week an agreement to freeze retail prices of gasoline and diesel for a month, but the company still upped wholesale prices while some gas stations, not owned by Lukoil, are not adhering to the agreement.
Two weeks ago, citizens, organized by internet social networks, staged mass rallies and blockades.
Rallies will be held Sunday in the capital Sofia, Burgas, the other Black Sea city of Varna, and the second largest city of Plovdiv, among others.
Meanwhile, Bulgaria farmers from the southeastern Strandzha Mountain region also announced they are going to protest Sunday against the mass slaughter of 700 cattle and sheep, according to their estimates, over fears of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD).
The farmers demand vaccines against FMD instead and say they are outraged because those whose animals have already been put down have received only BGN 900 per animal in compensations instead of the promised BGN 1 900.
A protest will be further held in the Sofia suburb of Busmantsi in front of the building used for temporary housing of foreign citizens under the motto "There Are No Illegal Human Beings."
The demonstrators demand freedom for all foreigners who have not been convicted of a crime; providing adequate shelter for all who have requested refugee status; alleviating the immigration procedure; closing the Busmantsi facility, and free movement of people.
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