A roundtable at the Council of Ministers was attended by deputy ministers and other representatives of all state institutions with competence in combating antisemitism to draw up the first national action plan to combat antisemitism in Bulgaria.
A roundtable was held at the Council of Ministers on Friday, May 12, to discuss a draft National Action Plan to Combat Antisemitism in Bulgaria, reports the Jewish News Syndicate.
The event was organised by the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry within the framework of a project titled “Strategic Cooperation between Bulgaria and Norway in Support of Bulgaria’s International Commitments to Combating Antisemitism and Preserving Jewish Heritage,” a project funded under the Financial Mechanism of the European Economic Area and the Norwegian Financial Mechanism. Bulgarian Deputy Foreign Minister Kostadin Kodzhabashev also took part in the event, along with deputy ministers and other representatives of all state institutions with competence in combating antisemitism, the deputy chief of mission at the Israeli embassy, a representative of the Norwegian Centre for Holocaust and Minority Studies, which is a partner in the drafting of the National Action Plan, as well as Bulgarian Jews, civil society and academia representatives.
Participating in the discussion via videoconference was Katharina von Schnurbein, European Commission Coordinator on combating antisemitism and fostering Jewish life, who made specific comments and suggestions, noting the rescue of Bulgarian Jews during World War II.
Kodzhabashev stressed that Bulgaria is an active participant in all the major international forums dedicated to the fight against intolerance, hatred and discrimination, including antisemitism, adding that Bulgaria is proud of its traditions and history of tolerance and integration of people of different ethnicities.
During the event, the attendees made many proposals to combat antisemitism more effectively. The draft National Plan is modelled on the 2021 EU Strategy on combating antisemitism and fostering Jewish life. It is being drafted to fulfil one of the national commitments made at the 2021 International Forum on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism in Malmo. The plan aims to strengthen the capacity and expertise of Bulgarian institutions, raise public awareness and expand academic research.