SOFIA (QHA) -

On March 14, the Representative Office of the European Commission in Sofia (Bulgaria) hosted a public discussion "Four years after the occupation of the Crimea: Is there a way out of the impasse?", according to the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) of Ukraine.

The discussion was organized by the Embassy of Ukraine and the office of the European Council on Foreign Relations  (ECFR), in which representatives of the Government, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria and the diplomatic corps, leading experts, political scientists and journalists took part.

“Chairman of Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people Refat Chubarov and Ukraine Ambassador Nikolai Baltagi presented the initiative of Ukrainian President Poroshenko on the creation of the international platform Friends of De-occupation of Crimea and informed about the current situation in the occupied Crimea, numerous violations of the rights of Crimean Tatars and ethnic Ukrainians by the occupation authorities, increased militarization of the peninsula, etc.,” the report says.

Refat Chubarov called on the EU member states and the Bulgarian government in the EU Council to condemn and not to recognize the election of the Russian president in the occupied Ukrainian Crimea, which will be held on March 18.

“He also informed about the appeal of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people to all citizens residing on the peninsula's territory to boycott the voting,” the message says.

Leading Bulgarian experts noted that the consequences of the occupation of the Crimea are dangerous not only for Ukraine, but also for the international community because of the growing security challenges in the Black Sea region.

"Security and defense experts called on NATO to strengthen the defense capability of all countries in the Black Sea region to counter the growing threats from the Kremlin, and to accelerate Ukraine's integration into the Alliance," the Foreign Ministry informed.

Furthermore, the representative office of the European Commission hosted a screening of the film "Prisoners of the Kremlin", which was provided by the Ministry of Information Policy of Ukraine.

Reportedly, on March 19 the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavlo Klimkin plans to call on the foreign ministers of the EU countries to impose sanctions against persons involved in the organization of elections in the occupied Crimea and not to recognize these presidential elections. Klimin noted that the situation cannot be left at the level of statements and the conviction of the Russian Federation.

QHA