The Academic Council of Sofia University has authorized rector Ivan Ilchev to take all legal measures to dissolve the ongoing occupation of the university’s main building.
The council came out with an official position Sunday, denouncing the occupation as gravely interfering with the education process and as an illegal act upon state property.
It further drew attention to the fact that occupiers are few in number and many of them do not even belong to Sofia University.
“By occupying public state property, the citizens who seized the Rectorate have committed a crime and are criminally liable,” states the Academic Council.
Earlier Sunday Sofia University president Prof. Ivan Ilchev said he will refer the case to the prosecution.
The desicion of the Academic Council in effect allows Ilchev to ask the police to interfere.
Bulgarian legislation and the Sofia University statute uphold a principle of “academic autonomy,” under which police officers are not allowed to be present in university premises.
However, exceptions are allowed in cases of crime prevention or by a justified request on the part of the university’s president.
Saturday citizens launched a second occupation of the Sofia University main building downtown in the Bulgarian capital, after an October-November occupation staged by students.
Both protest actions called for resignation of Bulgarian PM Plamen Oresharski, dissolution of Parliament and new elections, as well as for morality in Bulgarian politics.
Sunday the Sofia University student union also came out with a position denouncing the occupation, said it is not representative of the views of the school’s students.