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      Bulgaria: Protesters Trap MPs in Parliament

      Ministers, MPs trapped for over eight hours as angry rioters block the exits.
      By Maayana Miskin
      First Publish: 7/24/2013, 1:12 PM

      Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev
      Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev
      Flash 90

      Over 100 Bulgarian ministers and Members of Parliament were trapped for over eight hours as rioters surrounded Parliament and blocked the exits.

      The trapped MPs were finally freed early on Wednesday when police in riot gear forced their way through protesters’ lines.

      A previous attempt to free the MPs was thwarted when protesters blocked the intended escape bus with their bodies and hurled objects at it. Several people suffered head injuries in the ensuing clash.

      The Bulgarian government has faced protests for over a month. Demonstrators are calling to oust the current left-wing government, which they have accused of corruption.

      The center-right GERB party has joined them in urging the Prime Minister to resign.

      President Rosen Plevneliev has appealed to both protesters and police to keep protests non-violent. “I appeal to the protesters to keep the protest the way it was… peaceful, civilized and aimed at achieving the values of a democratic society,” he urged.