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Bulgaria: Citizenship May Be Restored To Emigres

Sofia, 4 November 1997 (RFE/RL) - Bulgaria wants to restore the citizenship of those who fled the country after the Communist take-over in order to encourage investment.

In the late 1940s and early 50s, authorities stripped citizenship from people who emigrated. These were people born in Bulgaria, but not ethnic Bulgarian -- and a significant number were Jews who emigrated to Israel.

Justice Minister Vassil Gotsev announced that those who fled or their direct descendants can have Bulgarian citizenship restored. Our correspondent quotes Gotsev as saying the action is of special economic importance to Bulgaria, as it will encourage foreign investment.

Israel's Ambassador to Sofia, David Levy, attended a news conference yesterday by Gotsev. And, Levy said he believes Bulgaria's decision will be well received in Israel.