SOFIA (Reuters) - A bomb blew up the car of a popular Bulgarian journalist late Thursday in Sofia, coinciding with a visit of European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and three members of the Commission to the Balkan country, the police said.
The explosion caused no casualties but the incident is the latest blow to the center-right government's efforts to put an end to the climate of impunity in one of the most corrupt EU member states ahead of local and presidential polls on October 23.
"(The police) are currently specifying the type of the explosive and its quantity," the Interior Ministry said in a statement.
Television journalist Sasho Dikov, known for his critical attitude to the cabinet, said he had never received any threats.
At the beginning of the year, a bomb exploded in front of the office of an opposition newspaper.
The government said at the time that the blast, which took place hours before the visit of a group of EU Commissioners, was meant to discredit the cabinet.
In July, small explosions rocked the offices of two right-wing opposition parties the day before Brussels was to issue its annual report on Bulgaria's progress in fighting endemic graft and organized crime.
Two men were arrested shortly after the blasts in front of the parties' offices over suspicions they planted the explosives.
In a joint news conference with Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borisov Thursday, Barroso praised the work of the government and said Sofia needed to continue the fight against crime and to press ahead with the reform of its judiciary system.
(Reporting by Irina Ivanova)