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Friday, February 15, 2013

Bulgaria thumbs its nose to terrorists, expels Hamas members

Bulgaria has once again thumbed its nose at terrorists, expelling a Hamas delegation that was visiting the Eastern European country. Hamas was attempting to use the visit to prove that it is being welcomed across Europe. Well, no, it's not.
Three officials from Hamas' parliamentary party the Change and Reform Bloc -- Ismail al-Ashqar, Salah al-Bardawil and Mushir al-Masri -- arrived in Bulgaria on Wednesday.

The bloc said in a statement Friday that Bulgarian security ordered them to leave the country before the end of the five-day visit. They said Israeli pressure was behind the move, and noted that they entered the country officially.

The Hamas delegation left Bulgaria shortly after.

The PLO ambassador in Bulgaria told Ma'an he was informed by the Bulgarian foreign ministry that they "regret" the presence of the Hamas delegation and took a decision to ask them to leave.

Amb. Ahmed Madbouh said the foreign ministry denied it had raided the hotel, but rather had a "calm discussion" with the Hamas delegates.

...

Hamas official Ahmad Yousef said Friday that his party's visit to Bulgaria could presage moving Hamas off the EU terrorism list.

Saying he had specific information, which he could not yet reveal, Yousef told Ma'an that EU countries had "no reservations against removing Hamas from the terrorism list," with the exception of Germany and the Czech Republic.

"There is more than one country in Europe that welcomes Hamas MPs, and this is a good sign," he said.

However, the Bulgarian government immediately moved to clarify that the delegates were not officially invited, and would not meet with government representatives, according to the Sofia news agency.
 Sounds like Hamas isn't coming off the terrorism list anytime soon.

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