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Bulgaria delays delivery of 100 armored personnel carriers to Ukraine: Reason explained

Bulgaria delays delivery of 100 armored personnel carriers to Ukraine: Reason explained Bulgaria delays delivery of APCs (
Author: Maria Kholina

Bulgaria has halted the delivery of 100 armored vehicles to Ukraine as the Ministry of Defense has reached out to NATO seeking coverage for transportation costs, according to reports from Euractiv.

The decision to send the machines was made over three months ago in parliament, with the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Bulgaria and the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine signing an agreement for their delivery.

"Bulgaria can help Ukraine a lot, but this is delayed due to the fact that the administration of the Ministry of Defence does not work optimally," said lawmaker Ivaylo Mirchev from the ruling coalition.

Defense Minister Todor Tagarev has faced constant criticism for his slow actions from parties supporting the pro-European government in Sofia.

"Bulgaria can help, but this is not happening at the required pace, and I hope this will improve. We voted on the decision for armoured personnel carriers almost three months ago, but in three months, we cannot transport a hundred APCs from Sofia to Ruse (a city at the Danube River in North-Eastern Bulgaria)," said Mirchev.

Bulgaria's defense position

Defense Minister Todor Tagarev explained the delay, saying that Sofia wants NATO allies to finance transportation.

"This is not an elementary transport operation because quite a number of train sets have to be engaged,” Tagarev told the state radio BNR on Sunday. The Defence Minister explained that the logistics are complex and the Bulgarian efforts are “appreciated by the Ukrainian side."

Euractiv has not received a response to its inquiry to the Ministry of Defense regarding specific reasons for the delayed APC delivery.

Bulgaria's military assistance

In the latest package of military aid to Kyiv, Bulgaria promised weaponry dating back to the Soviet era, including components for S-300 missile launchers, old S-300 missiles, APCs, shells, mortars, and other equipment.

In December, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy expressed gratitude for the armored vehicles and the new package of military aid from Bulgaria.

APC delivery

In July 2023, it was revealed that Bulgaria could provide Ukraine with about 100 armored vehicles from the Ministry of Internal Affairs stockpiles.

In December, Bulgarian President Rumen Radev vetoed the free provision of armored vehicles to Ukraine.

However, later on, the National Assembly of Bulgaria (parliament) overrode President Rumen Radev's veto regarding the supply of armored vehicles to Ukraine.