21 Jan 2013

Bulgarian gas pistol attack: gunman's motives questioned

It was a shot almost heard around the world as millions watched a man storm a stage in Bulgaria and then point his gun at a prominent opposition politician live on television. But many in Bulgaria are now trying to separate fact from fiction as they try to be clear about what motivated the attack.

Police took Oktai Enimehmedov, 25, into custody after he pulled the gun on Ahmed Dogan, the leader of the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF), a party supported by Muslim voters including some Turks in Bulgaria.


Police now say Enimehmedov was holding a gas pistol that was loaded with pepper spray, with two other "bullets" being simply noisemakers. He pointed the gun at Dogan's head during a party congress in the capital, Sofia, but failed to shoot. He was tackled to the ground and beaten by guards and party members as TV cameras continued to roll.

Enimehmedov, an ethnic Turk, reportedly left a note at his home addressed to his mother, saying he had no intention of killing the party leader but simply wanted to show him he was not "untouchable".

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