The Bulgarian Ministry of Defense (BMoD) said on Monday, Sept. 18 that it was sending experts to deal with a drone carrying a mortar bomb that crashed near the Black Sea town of Tyulenovo on Sunday evening.

Radoslav Rusev, a resident of the Bulgarian Black Sea resort of Tyulenovo was out walking at about 9:30 on Sunday evening when he noticed a strange object lying on rocks near his home.

According to Rusev’s account, on investigation he saw that it appeared to be the wings from a drone, about 3 meters long, onto which a mortar bomb was taped. He took photos of the object and then reported it to the authorities. The photos, published on the BNR News website, seem to confirm his assessment.

The BMoD announced on Monday morning that, having received a request from the regional governor of the Dobrich Region and by order of the chief of defense, a specialist Explosive Ordnance Disposal team was being dispatched from the Varna Naval Base to deal with the object. The team was tasked to both confirm the nature of the find and decide on the most appropriate means of disposing of it.

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The currently available images of what appears to be the wings and electronics pack of a heavily damaged drone make it unclear of its origin, although part of what looks like a handwritten serial number “+273*” is visible.

The initial assumption is that the drone was yet another “spillover” from Russian attacks in southern Ukraine, several of which have been reported in Romania. Like Bulgaria, Romania is a NATO member, raising concerns that the Alliance could be forced to respond in accordance with its article 5 commitments.

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Sources within Ukrainian intelligence told Kyiv Post that such a disinformation campaign aims to create the impression of “oppressed rights” for Romanians in Ukraine.

It was unclear how the drone had appeared there. The tourist town of Tyulenovo is 70 kilometers from the nearest Romanian border. It is also over 300 kilometers away from the Danube ports, which have recently suffered drone attacks by Russian forces, and the same distance from occupied Crimea, which Ukraine has been attacking with drones. It remains unclear whether the drone had crashed on the rocks or was damaged elsewhere, had fallen into the sea and washed ashore.

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