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Iraq: Bulgaria Offers Base To U.S. For Strike

Sofia, 3 October 2002 (RFE/RL) -- Bulgaria today offered to open its airspace and provide a Black Sea military base to the United States for use if Washington attacks Iraq. Bulgarian Defense Minister Nikolai Svinarov said his country had not received any requests so far but Bulgaria is prepared to allow U.S. forces to use the Sarafovo air base if requested.

Bulgaria allowed the U.S. to use the Sarafovo base during the campaign against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda forces in Afghanistan last year.

Bulgaria is among the countries seeking entry into NATO. Another hopeful for NATO membership, Romania, also offered use of its air bases and Black Sea ports to the U.S. earlier this week.

Both countries also provided logistical support for the NATO campaign in Kosovo.