Posted May 6, 2016

Robert ClarkeAlliance Defending Freedom's Robert E. Clarke serves as legal counsel and director of European advocacy for ADF International at its office in Vienna, Austria. Mr. Clarke has recently posted an article addressing the precarious situation of freedom of religion and the threat to a free and democratic society in Bulgaria. Here is the opening of the piece:

The communist regimes of the twentieth century were renowned for the restrictions they placed on religious freedom. Many churches and religious believers were driven underground as the state tightened its grip on people’s fundamental freedoms. Recent developments in Bulgaria demonstrate that these days are not entirely behind us. Some members of Bulgaria’s Parliament have made moves to exert state control over people’s religious freedom once again. 

The full article can be read here:

Bulgaria dragged back to communist era

A post referring to the commentary and the Bulgaria predicament also appears in the Italian website ACI Prensa.

Posted by Viktor Kostov, PhD attorney at law
editor in chief of Freedom for All, a web site for the freedoms of religion, conscience and speech

April 25, 2018

This post contains informational links to documents in English, Bulgarian and German related to our initiatives and media participations in regards to voicing opposition to the totalitarian, anticonstitutional and anti- human rights bills introduced by G. Kadiev, MPformerly of BSP and by BSP (Bulgarian Socialist Party "Left-wing Bulgaria).

Here are links to the texts of the actual bills, and our critical opinion, in English.

Critical notes to the first of the offending draft laws. (We are currently working on the translation of the second bill which is of the same nature. Keep in mind, however, that the bills are almost identical, being introduced to Mr. Kadiev’s bill will largely give one an idea of the Bulgarian Socialist Party bill, submitted to the Bulgarian Parliament two weeks later). 

The text of the first bill, by former socialist MP, G. Kadiev, translated in English (contains a link to the original bill, posted on Bulgarian Parliament's web site).

The text of the second bill, by the MPs from the Bulgarian Socialist Party, translated in English.

Please find below the text of the letter with which we submitted the packet of documents in protest against the latest legislative initiative of the Bulgarian Socialists, namely draft laws Bulgarian Law on Religious Confessions (Proposal No. 654-01-26 on 1 March, 2016 and Proposals No. 654-01-32 on 14 March 2016) at three European bodies on April 11.

The Declaration was submitted to Bulgarian parliament on April 1. 

Many thanks to all the kind people and Christian brothers and sisters from within Bulgaria and abroad who supported this initiative. Over 2100 support pledges were entered into the institutions with additional 800 which came in late.

Please, read further to see additional information and links including the translation of the offensive bill and our letter to the Venice Commission and two other European bodies.

Attack of the communists against faith continues

26 years after the fall of the communist regime representatives of the Communist Party (now called "Socialist"), which was never disbanded after the regime change, without any shame and embarrassment with renewed vigor reintroduced their ongoing war against Christianity, faith, fundamental human rights and freedoms. In spitе the fact that these rights and freedoms were brutally trampled on during their regime at the cost of the blood and freedom of tens of thousands during their totalitarian regime. 

Two weeks after the introduction of draconian bill by Georgi Kadiev, imposing full state control over believers and their organizations and churches, his former colleagues from the Communist Party raised the ante. 

The Socialists communist parliamentary group of the Socialist Party left Bulgaria Mariana Boyadjieva, Vasil Antonov,  Philip Popov and Georgi Tarnovaliyski filed in the registry of the National Assembly on March 14 yet another bill amending the Law on Religious Affairs. 

Besides the limitations introduced by Georgi Kadiev's bill, and those listed in our previous post, the news web site which reported on the new bill (by BSP), summarizes some of its content as follows: