Bulgaria: Antifa stands up to fascist march

Bulgarian Antifa held a protest in Sofia under the slogan  ‘No Nazis on Our Streets, No to Fortress Europe” on 17th February against the annual fascist demo commemorating Hristo Lukov: a World War 2 politician, minister of war, and a supporter of Nazi Germany.

Lukov was a leader of of the ultra-nationalistic organization Union of the National Bulgarian Legions, notable for pressuring the government to send the Bulgarian Jews to the German death camps. He was killed by member of the underground anti-fascist resistance in Sofia Violeta Yakova in February 1943. A neo- nazi rally is held in his honour each February since 2003, gathering both Bulgarian and international fascists. In past years, the march has been banned by Sofia Municipality, but has gone ahead anyway. This year, it was attended by several thousand fascists from Bulgaria, Germany, Russia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and other European countries. Participants carried flags and torches, provoking shock and even fear among citizens.

The counter demo, organised by Bulgarian Antifa, was attended by w wide range of groups: from Bulgarian LGBTQ+ community to Food Not Bombs and ordinary citizens. Banners included messages rejecting anti-refugee and anti-migrant sentiments.

Prior to the protest, Bulgarian Antifa issued a statement:[Lukov march] is a feast of the international right extreme, whose members come to Bulgaria in big numbers to join the march. Annually right extreme groups including such as the internationally banned Blood and Honour march on the streets of the Bulgarian capital. Over the last decade, anti-fa groups in Bulgaria have tried to block the march and the surrounding events, but the Bulgarian authorities have remained complicit with the right-extreme parties and groups.”

One of the organisers of the protest against the Lukov March, told local media that the march had become a procession of neo-Nazi ideologies, and people who were trying to put this kind of ideology back in public, with the support of politicians in power.

“We are here to show that there are people who are against any discrimination, violence, totalitarian regimes and for the freedom of the people, and the desire of people to live in a just and free world” they added.

Photo: Antifa Bulgaria