Bulgaria Confirms That Russian Foreign Minister's Plane Can Fly through Its Airspace

Tuesday, 28 November 2023

Bulgaria has confirmed that it has given permission for a plane carrying a Russian delegation headed by Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to fly through Bulgarian airspace so that they can attend an Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) ministerial meeting in North Macedonia.

The Bulgarian Foreign Ministry said permission was granted further to a request from North Macedonia.

The ministry stressed that this is a temporary permit, valid for three hours before and 72 hours after the scheduled date and time of the flight.

The Bulgarian Foreign Ministry added that this permit falls under the exceptions to the EU sanctions regime against Lavrov.

"This permit does not apply to members of his delegation, who are also persons subject to EU sanctions, as explicitly stated in the relevant note from Bulgaria," the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry’s statement said.

On 27 November, Eleonora Mitrofanova, Russia’s Ambassador to Bulgaria, claimed that she had obtained permission from the Bulgarian authorities for Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov’s plane to fly through the country’s airspace.

Last week, the government of North Macedonia gave permission for Russian planes to fly over its territory so that the delegation could attend the OSCE ministerial meeting. However, the country's Defence Minister Slavjanka Petrovska reportedly opposed this decision.

If you notice an error, select the required text and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editors.