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Bulgaria: Former Agriculture Minister Under Investigation

Sofia, 13 March 1997 (RFE/RL) - Bulgaria's chief Prosecutor tells RFE/RL that the former agriculture minister in the Socialist government, Vasic Chichibaba, is now under formal investigation.

Prosecutor Ivan Tatartchev says Chichibaba is under investigation as part of a probe of the agriculture ministry's role in a disasterous grain imbalance that led to a bread shortage across Bulgaria.

It has been alleged that officials with close ties to former Socialist prime minister Zhan Videnov manipulated Bulgaria's grain supplies by exporting large portions, or withholding grain supplies in order to make large personal profits.