Bulgaria: The US imposed sanctions on 3 Bulgarians with 64 companies

Bulgaria: The US imposed sanctions on 3 Bulgarians with 64 companies

The rule of law is at the heart of democratic processes in a state. In our relations with our partners and allies, we have unequivocally shared our conviction that the fight against corruption in all its forms should be our unconditional priority. This is stated in the official position of the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the sanctions announced by the US Department of State under the Magnitsky Act against Bulgarian individuals and legal entities.

“As strategic partners, Bulgaria and the United States maintain effective Strategic Dialogue. In this sense, and based on the established traditions of cooperation over the years, we are confident that Sofia and Washington remain ready for dialogue on all topics of shared interest.” the statement reads.

On Wednesday the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned three Bulgarian individuals for their extensive roles in corruption in Bulgaria, as well as their networks encompassing 64 entities.  The Administration believes corruption degrades the rule of law, weakens economies and economic growth, undermines democratic institutions, perpetuates conflict, and deprives innocent civilians of fundamental human rights, and today’s action — the single largest action targeting corruption to date — demonstrates the Department of the Treasury’s ongoing effort to hold accountable those involved in corruption.  The U.S. government will continue to impose tangible and significant consequences on those who engage in corruption and work to protect the global financial system from abuse.

“The United States stands with all Bulgarians who strive to root out corruption by promoting accountability for corrupt officials who undermine the economic functions and democratic institutions of Bulgaria,” said Office of Foreign Assets Control Director Andrea M. Gacki.  “Not only does corruption deprive citizens of resources, it can erode the institutions intended to protect them.  This designation under the Global Magnitsky sanctions program shows that we are committed to combatting corruption wherever it may be.”

This action targets Vassil Kroumov Bojkov, a prominent Bulgarian businessman and oligarch; Delyan Slavchev Peevski, a former Member of Parliament; Ilko Dimitrov Zhelyazkov, the former Deputy Chief of the Bulgarian State Agency for Technical Operations who was appointed to the National Bureau for Control on Special Intelligence-Gathering Devices; and the companies owned or controlled by the respective individuals./ibna