An increased military presence of NATO forces in the Black Sea would escalate tensions, said Bulgarian Vice Speaker of the National Assembly Krasimir Karakachanov on Tuesday.
In a statement sent to local media, Karakachanov said NATO’s decision to increase air and naval presence in the Black Sea would escalate tensions in the Black Sea region and intensify the confrontation between the NATO and Russia over the Ukraine crisis.
“Will the Black Sea NATO members establish a permanent naval group in the region, and will this mean the expansion of the joint air policing on the territory of Bulgaria and outside the country’s territorial waters,” questioned Karakachanov, who is also leader of Bulgarian National Movement in the parliament.
“Who benefits from the involvement of Bulgaria in the escalation of tensions in the Black Sea region?” said Karakachanov, “The Bulgarian people deserve to know the truth.”
Bulgaria, a Balkan country with a long coastline along the Black Sea, joined in NATO in 2004.
On Feb. 16, the Council of Defense Ministers of NATO member countries decided to increase air and naval presence in the Black Sea.
The decision included enhanced exercises and naval coordination of the NATO member states in the region of the Black Sea Basin.