Bulgaria is a country on the Balkan Peninsula of southeastern Europe. It is
bordered by Romania on the north, Yugoslavia and Macedonia on the west, Greece
and Turkey on the south, and the Black Sea on the east.
Mountains cover most of Bulgaria. Fertile valleys and plains separate the
mountains in many areas.
area: 111 000 km²
Population: 7.9 million
Bulgarian 89%, Turkish 8%, Fyrom and
Bulgarian (official), Turkish
Orthodox 85%, Muslim 13%
Lev bulgarian; 1 EURO
Bulgarian Lev: 1,947 (April 2004)
A Short Background
Bulgaria earned its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1878, but having
fought on the losing side in both World Wars, it fell within the Soviet sphere
of influence and became a People's Republic in 1946.
Communist domination ended in 1990, when Bulgaria held its first multi-party
election since World War II and began the contentious process of moving toward
political democracy and a market economy while combating inflation, unemployment,
corruption, and crime.
Today, reforms and democratization keep Bulgaria on a path toward eventual
integration into NATO and the EU - with which it began accession negotiations in
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