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Yesterday, Kulezich (Bulgarian TV host – editor’s note) nagged at me about an expensive watch, but there are really rich people in the country. They buy yachts, mansions; they travel. We will no longer repress the wealthy. When I travel around the country and see poor people, I cry. I have rich friends; they asked me to tell you that they, too, cry when they see the poor,” Nikolay Barekov before TV7 on January 27, 2014

Photos, published by Bivol two years ago, show how Nikolay Barekov laments Bulgarian poor – in the company of his wealthy friends, on “Nikki Beach” near Saint Tropez. The specialty of the house is pouring on each other champagne for 300 euros a bottle.

Chocho Alexandrov, Nessebar representative of VIS (one of the two most powerful crime groups in the 90s – editor’s note) and Georgi Iliev’s right hand, is seen among Barekov’s wealthy friends. There is also Vlado Arabadzhiev – son of Plovdiv hotelier Vetko Arabadzhiev, a gangland shootings’ hero.

“Against the backdrop of total misery and despair engulfing the whole society; against the complete lack of freedom of speech and the criminal censorship imposed on media, a TV host soaks his ass in champagne at a place afforded only by The Chosen,” Bivol wrote two years ago in an article entitled “The Ugly Face of Bulgarian Reality.”

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Meanwhile, Barekov underwent a transformation – from being the ugly face of Bulgarian journalism, he became the equally-ugly face of Bulgarian politics. Barekov is a collective image of political puppets in Bulgaria such as his likes – populist Yane Yanev and extreme nationalist Volen Siderov. Behind these puppets the fat and ugly face of backstage political games peeks undisguised; games that sparked Bulgarians’ protests persisting since June 14 until today.

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