Bulgaria's Defense Minister Promises Modernization of the Military

Bulgaria’s Defense Minister Krasimir Karakachanov gave new promises for the modernization of the Bulgarian military. This time it seems likely that they’ll be carried out, unlike the previous statements of modernization of the military .

The state of the military is a hot topic in the current government. Bulgaria’s President has been a vocal proponent of modernization and strengthening of the military, particularly the air forces. He also accused some of the country’s politicians of “degrading our military.” Karakachanov announced that the two priorities in the military are the buying of new armored vehicles for the ground forces (which should be manufactured in Bulgaria) and new NATO planes for the air force.

He gave a very similar promise earlier this year, saying that the voting will pass within 2 weeks, which didn’t happen. Capital.bg reported on the issue and claimed that this time the modernization is more likely to occur, as the Prime Minister Boyko Borisov, the deputy PM Tomislav Donchev, and the Minister of Economy Vladislav Goranov gave support to the project. Goranov is reported to be the main obstacle for modernization due to the large sums of money that would have to be spent on the project – 1.5 billion leva for the planes and 1.2 billion for the armored personnel carriers. 

A minimum of 8 aircraft will be bought as long as the budget allows it. The current state of the Bulgarian air forces is pretty bad, with many aircrafts relying on parts and equipment from Russia, a country that’s considered an adversary to NATO. Last year the Bulgarian Air Force pilots refused to fly their outdated MiG-29s in protest.

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Alex Dimchev

Alex Dimchev is a writer, editor, and weapons master for EUscoop.com

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