According to yesterday’s statements by Prime Minister Galab Donev, Russia did not officially tell Bulgaria of the charges launched against Grozev.
Minister Donev criticized the claims made by the Russian Federation and mentioned that this act is inappropriate and illustrates an attack on freedom of speech and an attempt to intimidate a Bulgarian citizen.
He added that the Bulgarian state would express its official protest and demand full information about the grounds for this decision to the ambassador of the Russian Federation, Eleonora Mitrofanova, who was summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for explanations on the case.
Later, Mitrofanova herself made the announcement as she left the ministry, stating that it had been decided to ask the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs for official information with specifics. Grozev is not in danger, but she emphasized that he shouldn’t travel to Russia.
On December 26, The Russian Federation issued a wanted notice for Christo Grozev, a Bulgarian reporter for the investigative website Bellingcat.
The only thing the Russian authorities said about the crimes for which he was sought was for spreading false information about the Russian army renowned for its sources in the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs. Following the invasion of Ukraine, it’s a crime which can be punishable by up to 15 years in prison and is frequently used for absurd cases.
According to BTV, the Bulgarian Ministry of Internal Affairs contacted the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation in order to learn more about the events following Christo Grozev’s placement on the list of the most wanted people. Ivan Demerdzhiev, the caretaker minister, signed the letter.