Report on Bulgaria Police Brutality Claims Due in September

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A probe into allegations of excessive use of force by Bulgarian police against antigovernment protesters will be completed in September, Interior Minister Tsvetlin Yovchev said Saturday, Sofia News Agency reported.

MOSCOW, August 3 (RIA Novosti) - A probe into allegations of excessive use of force by Bulgarian police against antigovernment protesters will be completed in September, Interior Minister Tsvetlin Yovchev said Saturday, Sofia News Agency reported.

On July 23 police clashed with protesters who had blockaded the parliament building with 109 lawmakers, current and former ministers and journalists inside. Violence erupted when police tried to evacuate some of those trapped inside using a bus as protesters started throwing bottles and stones at it.

Yovchev defended the evacuation decision, but said the investigation should establish whether there were any instances of “unwarranted police brutality,” the agency quoted him as saying.

On Thursday, Amnesty International sent a letter to Yovchev urging an in-depth investigation.

“During the operation, the police officers allegedly beat protesters indiscriminately, without being provoked or attacked by protesters," the organization said.

Protests in Bulgaria started on June 14 in response to the election of controversial media tycoon Delyan Peevski as head of the State Agency for National Security (DANS), Sofia News Agency said.

 

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