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SOFIA, March 24. /ITAR-TASS/. Several hundred Bulgarian citizens massed before the presidential administration building in the capital Sofia on Monday to protest against EU sanctions imposed on Russia.
Demonstrators gathered to wield posters reading “The EU did not free Bulgaria from Turkish domination, but Russia did” and “Crimea’s Bulgarians want Sofia to recognize the referendum”.
They arrived, attracting television broadcasters and news photographers, as the building assembled the country’s national security council to discuss events in Ukraine and possible consequences for Bulgaria.
Before the meeting, locals voiced confidence the meeting would not reach a consolidated agreement. Bulgaria’s President Rosen Plevneliev and his ruling party Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria have attacked Russia’s position and supported European sanctions.
But Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski stood against the punishment. “It should be mentioned that we would not support tight economic sanctions without analyzing their consequences. Our analysts say our country will be among those who will suffer the most from these consequences”, the premier said, adding that some "compensation mechanisms" needed discussion.
Oreshanski said he felt quite upset that large-scale sanctions might be possibly imposed on Russia and hoped the EU would find a balanced resolution to the conflict as events unfolded.