The President of Bulgaria, Rumen Radev, vetoed the agreement between Sofia and Kyiv on the delivery of 100 armored vehicles to Ukraine, his cabinet announced today.
That agreement, on the free delivery of 100 armored personnel carriers to Ukraine, was signed in August by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Bulgaria and the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, and the Bulgarian Parliament ratified it on November 22, according to the media in Sofia.
The armored vehicles that Sofia intends to send to Ukraine were manufactured around 40 years ago and have been labeled as obsolete by Bulgaria's Ministry of Internal Affairs. Radev, however, claims that the weapon could still be used to protect the border and to provide aid to the population in the event of disasters, including in hard-to-reach areas.
Radev returned the law on the confirmation of the agreement to the parliament, stating that the deputies "were not sufficiently familiar with the specific parameters of the donation" and therefore could not objectively assess whether the armored personnel carriers were truly obsolete.
"I am guided by the belief that the safety, health and lives of Bulgarian citizens must be our top priority," said Radev.
The Bulgarian parliament can override the head of state's veto with a new vote, but for now it is not known whether there is the necessary majority for such a decision.