46 Macedonian citizens were killed in a terrible tragedy that happened on a highway in Bulgaria this morning, when the bus carrying 53 Macedonian citizens flew off the highway, overturned and caught on fire.
12 children, of whom two were twins, are among the victims. The driver is also among the deceased. Seven passengers survived and were taken to Prigov Hospital in Sofia in serious condition with severe burns. The youngest survivor is only 15 years old.
“The picture is horrible and not everyone can stand it. I have never seen anything like this. It is difficult to determine how many people there were and who they were,” said Bulgaria’s Interior Minister Boyko Rashkov, who is at the scene along with Bulgarian Prime Minister Stefan Yanev.
According to initial information, the bus was part of a larger group of four buses that entered Bulgaria a few hours earlier from Turkey through the “Kapitan Andreevo” border crossing. According to unofficial information, they were returning from Istanbul and were supposed to enter Macedonia through the border crossing “Gjueshevo – Deve Bair” near Kriva Palanka.
Bulgaria’s President Rumen Radev and caretaker Prime Minister Stefan Yanev spoke by telephone with Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev, who immediately left for Bulgaria with Health Minister Venko Filipche and Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani.