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Bulgaria: Interior Minister Sees No Evidence of Assassination Plot

Sofia, 5 May 1997 (RFE/RL) - Bulgaria's caretaker Interior Minister Bogomil Bonev said today there is no evidence that a bomb found in Sofia last week was part of an assassination plot against the presidents of Romania and Bulgaria.

Officials last Wednesday found 0.7 kilograms of explosives planted by a sentry box near the Sofia airport about an hour before the presidents passed the place. Romanian President Emil Constantinescu was visiting as a guest of Bulgarian President Petar Stoyanov.

Bonev today confirmed reports that the device was made from four sticks of an Austrian explosive called "Lambrex" and that a hand grenade fuse was attached as a detonator. A ministry statement said the device could have caused serious damage within a 100-meter radius.

But Bonev today insisted that there is no evidence of an attempted presidential assassination. He told state radio that an investigation would show who planted the device and why. He gave no further details.