Petar Punchev, candidate for Chair of the State Agency for Bulgarians Abroad (SABA) is a graduate of the USSR system and an agent of the State Security, Bivol’s research showed. Punchev is one of the nine candidates for the post of Chair of SABA. He is admitted to participate in the upcoming hearing before a government commission, despite the scandalous circumstances in his biography. Deputy Prime Minister Meglena Kuneva, from the quota of the right-wing Reformist Bloc, is directly responsible for the activities of the Agency and the procedure for selecting its new leader. Kuneva has personally issued the order for the hearing of the candidates and the conditions for participation in it.
“Red Laughter” for Bulgarians Abroad
Punchev graduated with a major in Journalism from the Moscow State University “V. M. Lomonossov” in 1978. His graduation thesis is titled” Red Laughter – the first legal body for satire and humor of the Bulgarian Communist Party (1919-1923). The thesis examination was done by the Department of “History of Political Soviet Press”. Punchev has excellent grades in the State exam in the subjects “Scientific Communism”, “History of the Political Soviet Press” and “Theory and Practice of the Political Soviet Press”. This is a rich educational background, very useful for the current position of Head of the State Agency for Bulgarian Diaspora.
Versed with this fundamental theoretical and practical knowledge, Punchev returned to Bulgaria. What and how he did in the USSR is unknown, but it can be implied that it was reliable for the regime. Logically on May, 20, 1980, barely 24-year-old, Punchev was already appointed Assistant Department Chief in the Intelligence Directorate HQ.
Recruitment and Sertov’s agent
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His career in the secret services of the Communist regime did not end with his regular job in military intelligence. On April 24, 1986, he was recruited by the very same Petko Sertov, who was to become in the future the first Chief of Bulgaria’s State Agency for National Security (DANS). Sertov also became his leading officer, and remained such until 1990, in the Second Main State Security Directorate, which was in charge of fighting “against the counter-revolutionaries in the army, the capitalist intelligence and their agents”. Punchev was registered with his agent’s codename “Trojan“. The fact that his file was destroyed after 1989 with the express request to “delete from all files data about agent Trojan” is evidence of how valuable he was for the services. This is undoubtedly a clear sign of the particularly interesting facts and circumstances that the archive file of Trojan contained.
During the Transition period after the fall of Communism, agent “Trojan” became the big media owner of a number of electronic media – Mila FM, Radio World, Radio FM + and Orpheus Media FM. As such, he was probed by the Files’ Commission (examining the Communist era secret services’ files – editor’s note) and was exposed as former agent in 2009. His leading officer Petko Sertov quickly found his way in the new environment. He literally threw himself in the embrace of the French intelligence, as an investigation of Alexander Levy, published in Bivol, revealed and which was overlooked in silence by all current services, although it includes evidence of likely State treason.
Is Kuneva going to react?
Bivol send a request under the Access to Public Information Act (APIA) to the Council of Ministers and personally to Deputy Prime Minister Kuneva to obtain the full documentation on all candidates for the post of Chair of SABA, whose hearing will be held on February 9. Bivol asks whether Punchev’s Soviet diploma is legitimate according to Bulgarian legislation; whether it has been accordingly certified by the Ministry of Education and is it valid today on the territory of a Member State of the EU and NATO.
In the light of the presented facts, it would be interesting to hold a hearing of the leading officer of “Trojan” – Petko Sertov, who is no longer missing. What made agent “Trojan” valuable; why his file was destroyed in full and how his leading officer sees Punchev’s future work as a possible Chair of a key government agency?
The importance and role of SABA
SABA is an institution of strategic importance to our national future. In addition to working with targeted Bulgarian communities, the issuing of documents for Bulgarian origin, which are the basis for applying for citizenship, depends mainly on SABA. In the last three years, the last three governments of the Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party (GERB) and of the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), together with the Presidency, practically blocked the granting of citizenship to ethnic Bulgarians. This, in the context of a severe demographic crisis and the inevitable invasion of the country by Islamic immigrants, is tantamount to undisguised State treason with lasting cumulative effect.
The protests of Bulgarian communities abroad are symptomatic. The presence of a million-strong Bulgarian Diaspora in Bessarabia, Crimea and Tavria is particularly important in terms of the war waged in this former Soviet region. SABA’s possibilities of influencing the mass consciousness and behavior of Bulgarian communities in Ukraine are direct, as the Agency is the direct representative of the Bulgarian State. The mass manipulation of Putin’s propaganda of the minds and behavior of compact Bulgarian communities in Ukraine is a fact.
It is known that the Bessarabia Bulgarians have long insisted on a simplified procedure for obtaining Bulgarian citizenship, similar to that which Romania made for its citizens residents of Moldova. For those over 2 million ethnic Bulgarians, who preserved their language and traditions intact, Bulgaria is a desirable and attractive country. It only depends on us and our society to show solidarity and responsibility, similar to those after the wars 100 years ago, when Bulgaria accepted and integrated over a million refugees from Thrace and Macedonia. Their descendants today make up about half of the Bulgarian nation
Unfortunately, the State policy today still follows the former Communist doctrine of neglect of Bulgarians outside the country. The Communist Party established and maintained in serving foreign interest the fictional “Macedonian” nation through which our compatriots in Vardar Macedonia were forcefully alienated and turned into janissaries. In the spirit of this Communist traitorous policy, former Socialist Party Prime Minister Zhan Videnov publicly renounced Bulgarians in Greece and Serbia 20 years ago, from the tribune of the National Assembly.
Successive governments, including the current one, have not changed much this pernicious anti-national policy imposed by the Comintern and the Stalinist dictatorship after 1944. They follow unconditionally the Communist milestones for the creation of barriers for Bulgarians outside the country to integrate into our society, the latter being the only real solution for the expected demographic collapse in the next 15 years. At the same time, the granting of citizenship to residents of Turkey and immigrants from the Near and Middle East, who have passed on Bulgarian territory, is a much easier procedure. This is absurd, and is performed by a government saying that SABA has a key role. On the other hand, namely SABA is the institution that is responsible for the active government policy regarding Bulgarian expats in Western Europe and the United States, whose number has already grown to about 3 million, mainly young and educated Bulgarians.
The attempts to place a graduate of the Soviet system and a faithful recruit of the Communist secret services at the head of this institution are more than scandalous. From this perspective, it is not surprising that a current “Trojan Horse” is being secretly and slowly primed to become Chair of SABA.
Bivol expects a quick response and position from Deputy Prime Minister Kuneva and the Members of the Parliament. Detailed information about the activity of SABA in recent years and the problems of our compatriots in Diaspora, can be found (in Bulgarian) through the internet media of Bulgarians in the United States – EuroChicago.
Petar Punchev contacted one of our editors and said that what we have written about him is not correct; it is morally wrong and is not true. Since Bivol does not refuse to anyone the right of reply, we are ready to do the same for Mr. Punchev if he explains precisely what exact published documents do not correspond to the truth. Petar Punchev asked us to remove the publication as a precondition, but did not specifically and essentially refute anything, only saying he felt offended by the overall text. It is impossible – Bivol never removes publications that are based on compelling documents and not on free interpretations. The particular remark of Mr. Punchev that Red Laughter, which was the subject of his graduation thesis in the USSR, has not been published in the USSR, was a mistake that we fixed. This was a publication of the Bulgarian Communist Party. We are also publishing the right of reply of Mr. Petar Punchev.
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