Bulgarian Officials Detain Man Accused of Assaulting RFE/RL Journalist

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A person who was filmed assaulting an RFE/RL correspondent at a rally for Bulgaria’s ruling GERB get together in Sofia has been charged with hooliganism and detained after admitting to being a paid provocateur.

In a press release on August 7, the Sofia District Prosecutor’s Office mentioned the 20-year-old man was being prosecuted for snatching RFE/RL journalist Polina Paunova’s telephone and throwing it over a fence.

Prosecutors mentioned the unidentified man confessed to the crime and was absolutely cooperating with police.

Another 22-year-old man who was current in the course of the assault was taken into custody the identical day and later launched. Police have additionally questioned a 66-year-old who could be seen within the footage insulting Paunova.

The incident occurred at an August 5 GERB get together rally attended by Prime Minister Boyko Borisov, who’s beneath stress from weeks of anti-government protests.

Protesters had been additionally on the GERB get together occasion demanding the resignation of Borisov‘s third cupboard and the federal government’s chief prosecutor, Ivan Geshev.

In a twist to the assault case, prosecutors mentioned the 20-year-old man claimed that “people involved in organizing the protests had promised him payment if he provoked and carried out provocative actions against participants” on the occasion held at Sofia Tech Park on August 5.

The declare that it was anti-government protesters who paid a provocateur, and never a GERB get together member roughing up journalists and the opposition, has raised questions over how the federal government could also be attempting to spin the narrative.

RFE/RL footage from the occasion reveals GERB get together public-relations individuals escorting an anti-government heckler from the realm.

The similar public-relations males additionally tried to cease RFE/RL from filming and had been on video harassing different individuals.

The 20-year-old man who assaulted RFE/RL correspondent Paunova was additionally seen on video with GERB get together members and its public-relations staff.

GERB claims that they have no idea the people in query and that they had been “paid provocateurs,” although they had been carrying GERB stickers.

After the rally, the GERB get together filed a grievance with the police, alleging that their worker had additionally been attacked and crushed.


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