New 'Snooping' Scandal Surfaces in Bulgaria
Bulgaria's Chief Prosecutor, Sotir Tsatsarov, is ordering a probe over recent information the Interior Ministry has spied illegally on politicians, businessmen, magistrates and journalists.
Tsatsarov got the tipoff Thursday by the leader of the Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, and of the Party of European Socialists, PES, former Prime Minister, Sergey Stanishev.
Stanishev says he is in shock after receiving earlier in the week via email the said tipoff, alleging mass spying on the part of the Interior Ministry under the rule of the Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB, and its Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, ever since they took office in 2009.
According to this information, the eavesdropping had been done without a warrant by a judge, as the law postulates.
The tipoff is anonymous, Stanishev admitted, but stressed details in it, such as the names of the people on wiretap, the equipment used, as well as naming the involved "spies," have made it very reliable, and sufficient to "impress" Tsatsarov.
"If this is to be proven, this would turn into a huge scandal. This would be Bulgaria's Watergate," Stanishev pointed out.
According to the tipoff, the list of wiretapped people includes former President, Georgi Parvanov, current President, Rosen Plevneliev, right-wing leader and former PM, Ivan Kostov, honorary ethnic Turkish leader, Ahmed Dogan, nationalist leader, Volen Siderov, former Finance Minister, Simeon Djankov, EU Commissioner, Kristalina Georgieva, when on visits to Bulgaria, Tsvetelina Borislavova - banker and ex-girlfriend of former PM, Boyko Borisov, businessmen Ivo Prokopiev, Grisha Ganchev, Georgi Gergov, and a number of magistrates, among others.
Tsvetanov firmly rejects the accusations, labeling them slander and black PR.
On Friday, he clashed with Stanishev during the morning political talk show of bTV.
Tsvetanov even went as far as declaring he would quit politics for good if the allegations turn out to be true.
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