U.S. Department of State representative visits the Chelopechene site
The project “Chelopechene UXO Removal” aims to safely recover and remove all identifiable UXO (estimated at approximately 1,500 tons) originating from 03 July 2008 blast at the Bulgarian military’s Chelopechene munitions depot. The project is funded by the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement (PM/WRA), Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, U.S. Department of State and implemented by Sterling International Group, LLC (surface and deep sub-surface clearance) and RCUD Montenegro (clearance of nearby river channels and small lakes). The “Chelopechene UXO Removal” project will increase the safety of people living in the area and also safeguard the main highway which is less than 500 meters away from the blast site and leads to Sofia, capital of Bulgaria. Additionally, the project will reduce the surplus of munitions stockpile in Bulgaria.
On 15 September 2011, a field visit to the Chelopechene blast site for the donor representative Mr John E. Stevens, Foreign Affairs Officer at PM/WRA was organized. Mr Stevens was accompanied by Mr Joseph J. Fitzgerald, Political Military Officer at the US Embassy in Bulgaria, Mr Goran Ga?nik, ITF Deputy Director and Mr Shane M. Franklin, Director of European Operations, Sterling International Group, LLC.