Russian Nationals Accused of Falsifying Documents for Bulgarian Citizenship

Business | April 23, 2024, Tuesday // 16:35
Bulgaria: Russian Nationals Accused of Falsifying Documents for Bulgarian Citizenship

In a concerning revelation, the ad hoc committee investigating the activities of Gleb Myshin uncovered that over the past three to four years, a staggering 343 candidates from the Russian Federation seeking Bulgarian citizenship were discovered to have submitted falsified documents. Atanas Atanassov, the chair of the committee, disclosed this information following a committee meeting focused on the acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship by Russian citizens.

Myshin, purportedly a Ukrainian-born Russian, is alleged to have orchestrated a scheme enabling Russians to acquire Bulgarian citizenship through the use of suspected document forgery.

Atanassov expressed alarm over the implications of this situation, emphasizing the vulnerability it poses in granting Bulgarian citizenship to individuals from a country that has declared Bulgaria as hostile. He underscored the urgent need for legislative reforms to enhance the entire process. Atanassov particularly highlighted the necessity to streamline the operations of the Executive Agency for Bulgarians Abroad, which issues certificates of Bulgarian origin to foreigners. He raised doubts about the agency's ability to accurately verify such claims.

Additionally, Atanassov called for an evaluation of the structure and functioning of the Bulgarian Citizenship Directorate within the Justice Ministry.

During a closed-door meeting of the committee, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, the Director of the Migration Directorate at the State Agency for National Security (SANS), was questioned. However, SANS chairman Plamen Tonchev did not attend the session. Atanassov criticized SANS for its apparent oversight in detecting Myshin's activities, questioning how such a breach could occur without SANS's awareness.

Despite the absence of Tonchev, Atanassov stated that there was no immediate need to summon him to the next committee meeting. He emphasized the importance of Tuesday's session, where Tonchev was expected to hear the findings uncovered by the committee.

The ad hoc committee, established by parliament in mid-February to investigate Myshin's activities related to potential misrepresentation of Bulgarian citizenship, continues its inquiry. Atanassov announced plans for another meeting to present a draft report on the committee's findings, which will be subject to a vote.

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Tags: Bulgaria, citizenship, Russians, documents

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