Bulgaria cannot label Hezbollah a terror organization, the country’s foreign minister said Saturday, several days after Sofia released a report blaming the Lebanese group for a bombing that targeted Israelis.
Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov told Bulgarian radio that even if Bulgaria wanted to give the group a new label, it did not have the legal framework for it.
On Tuesday, Bulgarian Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov released a report suggesting that Hezbollah was behind a July 18 bombing of a bus near the resort town of Burgas that killed five Israelis and a Bulgarian.
The report is expected to serve as a shot in the arm for efforts by Israel and the US to have the Iran-backed group, which currently enjoys free movement across much of Europe, labeled a terror organization by the European Union.
Mladenov said the issue would be discussed at an EU meeting of foreign ministers later this month.
“A lot of details of the findings will be discussed. In the following months and weeks what we found related to the attack will not remain without its consequences on the part of the EU,” Mladenov said, according to the Sofia News Agency.
Investigators say they believe two of the suspects behind the bombing, who hold Canadian and Australian passports, are currently in Lebanon.
Since the probe’s release, Sofia has sent requests for cooperation to Israel, Lebanon, Canada and Australia, AFP reported.
Lebanon has been asked to arrest and question the suspects, Bulgaria’s Standart newspaper reported.