Skinhead Attack in Bulgaria
12 October 1996
On the evening of June 18, 1996, three Roma were attacked by a group of about 20 skinheads in the town of Samokov in west-central Bulgaria. The group surrounded the victims in the street and then kicked and beat them with clubs. One of the Roma attacked managed to escape before being injured and he called the police.
The police found 26-year-old Bisser Asenov unconscious at the scene of the attack. The medical report issued in the local hospital documented contusions on his head, a lacerated right leg, as well as numerous bruises and haemorrhages all over his body. Fifteen days after the incident, Mr. Asenov had not yet recovered from the attack: he had difficulty speaking and his head as well as other parts of his body were still swollen.
The other victim, 51-year-old Steffanka Assenova, lost consciousness during the beating and as a result of her head injuries has no memory of the attack or of the period following it.
According to The Human Rights Project, no one has been arrested in connection with the incident and the case is stalled on the desk of the prosecutor. The Romani victims claim that all of their efforts to get details of the case from the police have been met with hostility. The Human Rights Project has written a letter of concern to the police, the prosecutor's office, and the Minister of the Interior. As yet, the letter remains unanswered.
(The Human Rights Project)