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In Bulgaria, Ukrainian detained for spying on country's largest thermal power plant

In Bulgaria, Ukrainian detained for spying on country's largest thermal power plant Archive photo: a Ukrainian was detained in Bulgaria (Getty Images)
Author: Daryna Vialko

A 23-year-old Ukrainian who entered the territory of the Maritsa East 2 thermal power plant was detained in Bulgaria, according to Deputy Head of the City Prosecutor's Office Hristo Krastev.

It is reported that during the search, drones, mobile phones, cameras, numerous SIM cards, and memory cards were found in his possession.

The man was arrested and accused of collecting information that constitutes a state secret intending to provide it to a foreign country.

"We are currently preparing examinations to establish whether he indeed took photos and which photos are of a strategic object, as the Maritsa Iztok 2 thermal power plant is a strategic object, according to the Council of Ministers' resolution," explained Krastev.

The man was detained for 72 hours, and a petition for a permanent measure of detention is under consideration by the Sofia City Court.

What else is known about the case

Journalists report that law enforcement is also investigating whether it was the man's first time on the premises of the strategic object.

The accused has already testified and explained when he arrived in Bulgaria, from where he entered, what he did, and with whom he met.

"I wouldn't say there is a threat to the country's security," Krastev said.

How the man managed to penetrate the territory of the Maritsa East 2 TPP is currently being determined.

Location of the TPP

The Maritsa East 2 Thermal Power Plant is located in Bulgaria, in the Stara Zagora Province, near the town of Galabovo. It is the largest coal-fired TPP in Bulgaria and one of the largest in the Balkans.

Russia spying on European countries

Since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin has intensified its intelligence activities in European countries. Earlier, Bloomberg reported that Russian military intelligence has been more active in Europe.

The New York Times reported that Russia was conducting a large-scale campaign in Europe to disrupt military supplies to Ukraine.