Analysts Say Bulgaria's Position on Kosovo Does Not Constitute Good Investment in Future

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Analysts Say Bulgaria's Position on Kosovo Does Not Constitute Good Investment in Future

"Bulgaria's official foreign policy towards Kosovo does not make a good investment in the foreseeable and longer term future," according to Chairman of the Governing Board of the Bulgarian Association for Foreign Policy (BAFP) Peter Andonov, who presented at a news conference Wednesday a declaration in which BAFP expressed its opinion on the matter.

Andonov said that the politicians tend to forget the simple truth that Bulgaria's membership in NATO and the EU is not just an honor and privilege but also an obligation and a means to realize the Bulgarian national interests, BTA is reporting.

In the declaration BAFP voices its concern that for a long time now the official Bulgarian foreign policy has failed to formulate a clear position on the Kosovo issue and defend it, but has instead resorted to the tactics of waiting and "keeping of low profile" and "hiding behind commonplace phrases" typical for the recent past.

BAFP's categorical position is that Bulgaria should recognize Kosovo's independence together with the first group of EU member states who do so.

Andonov said that Bulgaria fails to come forward with clear interests in the region and based on them to formulate a position that is understandable to Serbia, among others. According to Andonov, this country's interests in the region are apparent: stability in Southeast Europe and quick integration of the Western Balkan countries in NATO and EU. He voiced his concern that Bulgaria has withdrawn from its leading position in the region which it had eight or nine years ago.

Bulgaria's former ambassadors to Macedonia, Albania and Serbia, Angel Dimitrov, Bobbie Bobev and Yani Milachkov, members of BAFP, expressed similar opinions.

Dimitrov argued that the left-wing forces in Bulgaria have gone back to keeping a low profile before the unknown so typical of the communist times.

Bobev said Bulgaria is still behaving like a candidate EU country, and not like a full-fledged member.

Former Foreign Ministry Spokesman Radko Vlaikov said that there is lack of coordination among the different institutions with regard to Kosovo.

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