The Plovdiv Regional Court has sentenced for hooliganism eight people, arrested during the disturbances in the city on Friday.
They were accused of “indecent behavior, grossly violating the public order and extremely cynical and impertinent actions”. The defendants signed plea bargains with the prosecution and received fines and suspended sentences.
The public disturbances erupted when a protest against Bulgarian Chief Mufti’s office’s claim to ownership of an old mosque in nearby town of Karlovo, which for many decades has not served as temple, turned violent. Several thousand people, some of them alleged football hooligans, marched the streets in Plovdiv, broke the windows of the city’s Dzhumaya mosque, tried to attack Turkey’s consulate and threw rocks, flares and smoke bombs at the police.
As a result there were several injured protesters and more than 120 arrested. Over the weekend the majority were released, several were fined and several received minor sentences.