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'Vampire Grave' Found in Bulgaria

Man buried in 13th century had stake through his heart

(Newser) - An archaeologist in Bulgaria has found what he calls a "vampire grave" from the 13th century—so named because the middle-aged gent inside the coffin had a stake driven through his heart, reports UPI . That, of course, is the age-old and evidently successful way to keep someone from returning... More »

European Corruption 'Breathtaking': EU Report

Romania and Bulgaria lead the pack of worst offenders

(Newser) - Think Europeans are unlikely to be corrupted by a bribe? Not according to a new EU report that calls European corruption "breathtaking" in scope and says it costs at least $120 billion a year, the BBC reports. The extent of corruption varies by country, but 75% of Europeans surveyed... More »

Greek Mystery Girl's Mom Identified

Sure enough, Sasha Ruseva of Bulgaria is her biological parent

(Newser) - It's official: The "mystery girl" found living with a Roma couple in Greece is the biological daughter of another Roma couple from Bulgaria , DNA tests have confirmed. Sasha Ruseva and her husband Atanas are genetic matches for the girl, who is known as Maria, the Bulgarian Interior Ministry... More »

Archaeologists Find Unusual Murder Weapon: a Ring

Would have been used to hold poison, says dig leader

(Newser) - Archaeologists have uncovered a cache of jewelry from the ruins of Bulgaria's Cape Kaliakra. But one of the more than 30 pieces found there over the last two years is getting particular attention—a ring that may have doubled as a murder weapon. Discovery News reports the centuries-old bronze... More »

Protests Topple Gov't in 'Bulgarian Spring'

PM quits after protests against high power prices

(Newser) - Nationwide protests against austerity measures and soaring electricity prices have brought about a "Bulgarian Spring." Prime Minister Boiko Borisov says his government is resigning after 25 people were injured in clashes between protesters and police, Reuters reports. "I will not participate in a government under which police... More »

Attacker Aims Gun at Pol, Pulls the Trigger

Ahmed Dogan of Bulgaria escapes gas-gun attack

(Newser) - A stunning attack on a Bulgarian politician went awry today when the assailant's weapon failed to go off, the BBC reports. Ahmed Dogan, leader of Bulgaria's ethnic Turks, was giving a televised speech in Sofia when a man stormed the stage and aimed a gun at his head.... More »

Bulgaria Says Video Shows Suicide Bomber

But his identity remains unclear

(Newser) - We apparently now know what the suicide bomber who targeted Israelis in Bulgaria looks like, but the rest of his story remains a source of conflicting reports. Bulgarian security officials today released a video of the casually dressed man they say is the bomber, reports the Times of Israel . Media... More »

Bulgaria: Bus Bomber Had Fake US ID

Israel blames Iran for suicide attack that killed 8

(Newser) - The bus bombing that killed at least eight people at a Bulgarian airport yesterday, most of them Israelis, was probably the work of a suicide bomber, according to Bulgarian authorities. Investigators believe that the man—who was filmed by security cameras walking around the airport for an hour before the... More »

Israeli Tourists Killed in Bulgaria Bus Bombing

Police put death toll at 4, but it could grow

(Newser) - A bus carrying young Israeli tourists in a Bulgarian resort exploded today, killing at least four people and wounding about 20, police say. Witnesses told Israeli media that the huge blast occurred soon after someone boarded the vehicle. Images showed smoke billowing from the scene in the Black Sea city... More »

New Clues Emerge on John the Baptist's Bones

Dating strengthens case that saint's bones have been found in Bulgaria

(Newser) - Scientists may have cracked the hunt for John the Baptist's bones. New radiocarbon dating is strengthening the case that the saint's bones were discovered at the site of an ancient Bulgarian church dedicated to him. Dating places the bones in the same First-Century period when John the Baptist... More »

Skeletons Found in Bulgaria Tell Tale of Vampires

Iron rods hammered through remains to keep dead from feasting on living

(Newser) - Bulgarian archaeologists say they have unearthed centuries-old skeletons pinned down through their chests with iron rods—a practice believed to stop the dead from becoming vampires. According to the head of the National History Museum in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, two skeletons from the Middle Ages were found in such... More »

3 European Countries Grab at Private Pensions

Hungary, Bulgaria, Poland call for citizens' savings

(Newser) - As European governments seek new sources of revenue, private retirement plans are taking a hit. Since most are organized by the state, "European ministers of finance have a facilitated access to the savings accumulated there, and it is only logical that they try to get a hold of this... More »

John the Baptist Found—in Bulgaria

Or so claim archaeologists of reliquary found last week

(Newser) - Archaeologists excavating the site of a 5th-century monastery on a Black Sea island claim they've found remains of John the Baptist. A reliquary found last week at the site on Sveti Ivan contains fragments of a skull, a hand, and a tooth. Archaeologists cite a Greek inscription on the reliquary... More »

Politician Booted for Playing Farmville

Obsessive playing gets Bulgarian voted off city council

(Newser) - Farmville addiction has cost a European politician his job. Dimitar Kerin got voted off the city council of Plovdiv, Bulgaria, after checking his virtual crops one too many times during budget meetings. Council members recently got free laptops and access to a wireless network, and distracted bureaucrats have since been... More »

Bulgarian Scientists: Aliens Have Landed!

Researchers claim they deciphered crop circles

(Newser) - Aliens are here and they've chosen to make contact with the Bulgarians first, according to researchers at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. The deputy director of the academy's Space Research Institute says researchers are analyzing crop circles for the answers to 50 questions they posed to the extra-terrestrials, the Telegraph... More »

Bulgaria Detains Kosovo's Ex-PM on War Crimes Charges

But UN wants ethnic Albanian leader freed

(Newser) - Bulgarian authorities have detained a former Kosovo prime minister on an international arrest warrant issued by Interpol at Serbia's request, reports the AP. Agim Ceku, PM between 2006 and 2008, is wanted for war crimes allegedly committed during the 1998-1999 war when he was military chief of the Kosovo Liberation... More »

EU Faces Crisis as Russia Cuts Off Gas

Spat with Ukraine leaves half of continent short of fuel

(Newser) - European nations from Austria to Greece lost most or all of their gas supplies today, as a showdown between Russia and Ukraine imperiled the entire continent. Last night Gazprom, the Russian state gas company, cut its supply by 60% to punish Ukraine for allegedly stealing fuel that should flow through... More »

Team Digs Up Ancient Chariot

(Newser) - Archaeologists have unearthed a 1,900-year-old chariot in good condition at an ancient Thracian tomb in southeastern Bulgaria. The team found the four-wheel chariot during excavations near the village of Borisovo, around 180 miles east of the capital, Sofia. It's rare to find a chariot of this age in one... More »

Eastern Europe: Charm for Less

Prague, Poland among adventurous destinations for thrifty travelers

(Newser) - The ever-pricier euro is sending determined travelers east, past the Eiffel Tower, to overlooked treasures like Prague's Old Town Square. Check out cheaper, Eastern European must-sees as recommended by Forbes:
  1. Peterhof State Museum-Reserve, St. Petersburg, Russia: These palaces and 18th-century gardens rival those of Versailles.
  2. Plitvice Lakes National Park, Plitvice
... More »

Libya Reveals Source of $$$ to Free Medical Workers

(Newser) - Libya announced details today about the deal that freed six foreign medical workers, as it  officially protested the pardoning of the workers by the Bulgarian government, BBC reports. The group had been imprisoned in Libya since 1999 for infecting 438 children with HIV/AIDS. But international experts say there was... More »

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