Yesterday, on the 20th of October 2017 the Defence Minister of Bulgaria Krassimir Karakachanov stated that ladders had been used to climb the fence at the Bulgarian-Turkish border. On the same day the minister said to BGNews that the fence is 100% finished and has to be “upgraded with relevant sensors [and] cameras“. Days before, photos were circulating in the Bulgarian media showing a large hole underneath the fence, which were leading to a bigger discussion in the Bulgarian parliament and the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) has called for the resignation of the Deputy Prime Minister Valeri Simeonov. In 2016, the Bulgarian parliament voted for using the army at the Bulgarian borders to guard it, but since then it was used only partly.
Since weeks the migration flow at the Turkish-Bulgarian border is increasing again. The UNHCR came out with a report in August 2017 which added together the numbers of interceptions at the Turkish-Greek and the Turkish-Bulgarian land borders from January-August 2017 and mentioned a quantity of 17,067 people. Only in August 2017 a number of 464 was intercepted at the Bulgarian-Turkish border by Turkish land forces. In September and October 2017 Turkish authorities reported about several attempts of crossing the Bulgarian border, which were reported broadly in the Turkish media. As opposed to this a number of 586 intercepted people was mentioned in the last report of the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior for September 2017.