(JTA) — Israel’s ambassador in Sofia asked Bulgarian authorities to ban the sale of Nazi memorabilia.
Shaul Kamisa-Raz made the request in a letter to Bulgarian government officials with copies to mayors of major cities, the Sofia Globe news website reported Wednesday.
He asked whether there were legal ways to ban the sale and, if not, whether legislation banning it could be passed. “The topic of anti-Semitism should be studied in its historical context and the threats arising from this evil properly identified. We need to know what damage and what horrors can result, ” he said.
In an interview with the 24 Chassa daily newspaper earlier this week, Kamisa-Raz said that he had been alerted by an Israeli television station to the sale of drinking glasses embossed with swastikas.
The growth of far-right ideas and movements could reflect negatively on Bulgaria’s image abroad, he warned.
“It is gratifying, however, that in Bulgaria we see that society shows the power and ability to deal with these problems,” he added.
The far-right Ataka Party won 7 percent of the vote in last year’s general election. On Wednesday, following an illegal march by far-right activists in Sofia last week, the National Assembly adopted a declaration proposed by Speaker Mihail Mikov in connection with the escalation of tension on ethnic, religious and political grounds. The declaration, approved with 113 votes in favor and three against, said that Bulgaria’s National Assembly rejects and opposes: “All encroachments on religious houses of worship and violent desecration of them, along with unacceptable xenophobic messages.”