On June 18, 2018, Neno Dimov, the Bulgarian Minister of Environment and Waters invited to lunch dozens of Ambassadors to UNESCO at the headquarters of the International Organization in Paris. However, his visit was kept secret even from the Ministry’s press office as its employees did not know where their Minister was.

During the lunch, Neno Dimov lobbied against a draft decision of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in connection with Pirin National Park, Bivol has learned from his diplomatic sources.

As the Coalition “For the Nature in Bulgaria” reported, experts from the International Organization have raised concerns about the conservation of Pirin National Park as a World Heritage Site. They want a complete environmental assessment of the new management plan of the Park. The experts also insist on postponing government changes to the current plan. The draft decision must be voted on at the Organization’s annual meeting in Bahrain in June 2018.

The Ministry of Environment and Waters (MOEW) does not know where the Minister is

Earlier on Monday, Bivol received a tipoff from a reader that he had spotted Neno Dimov in Paris while entering the UNESCO headquarters and had immediately called the MOEW’s press office, asking where the Minister currently is. It turned out that the visit to Paris had not been listed in the international visit calendar.

“On the first of July, he must be in Hungary, Budapest… The international calendar does not have such a visit to Paris… The Minister’s schedule was last updated on May 21,” the press office reported.

Nevertheless, after a written request, the press officers specified that Neno Dimov was on a one-day working visit to Paris and was in UNESCO.

During his working visit to Paris, Minister Dimov held working meetings on the preparation of the upcoming session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee to be held from 24 June to 4 July in Bahrain, where our country will be represented.

Bivol sent questions to the MOEW under the Access to Public Information Act (APIA) regarding the meeting in UNESCO. We asked who had attended it and how much was paid for the lunch with the ambassadors in the French capital.

 

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