Bulgaria cites 'clear signs' Hezbollah behind Burgas bombing

Bulgarian interior minister says he has no doubt about group's involvement at the opening of a monument to victims of attack.

By REUTERS
July 18, 2013 12:33
1 minute read.
ZAKA man examines damage in Burgas

ZAKA man examines damage in Burgas 390. (photo credit: Avigdor Shatran)

 
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Bulgaria has no doubts that Lebanese Islamist group Hezbollah was behind a bus bombing that killed five Israeli tourists and a Bulgarian driver at the Black Sea city of Burgas exactly a year ago, the interior minister said on Thursday.

"There are clear signs that say Hezbollah is behind the Burgas bombing," Interior Minister Tsvetlin Yovchev told reporters before a commemoration ceremony and opening of a monument to the victims of the attack at the Burgas airport.

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Hezbollah denies any involvement in the attack.

Evidence that Hezbollah was behind the bombing was a main reason why Britain sought the blacklisting of the Shi'ite Muslim's group military wing by the European Union, a move that has yet to win the support of some governments.

Several EU capitals had objected, arguing such a move could destabilize Lebanon where Hezbollah is part of the government, and questioning whether there was sufficient evidence linking the group to the attack in the seaside resort of Burgas.

On Wednesday, EU diplomats said Brussels could blacklist Hezbollah's military wing while stressing it is open to talking to the movement's political faction under a proposal by the EU's foreign policy chief.

Yovchev said that since the new Socialist government took office at the end of May, Sofia has received more information from foreign services that also points to Hezbollah's involvement.

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Bulgaria will need more time to conclude its investigation and bring the case to court, he said.

Sofia still has to identify the bomber and track two of his accomplices, who authorities said were of Lebanese origin with Canadian and Australian passports and were connected to Hezbollah.

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