A Bulgarian politician today survived anÂ extraordinary assassination attempt when a man stormed the stage and held a gunÂ to his head as he was giving a speech.
Fortunately for Ahmed Dogan, leader of theÂ Movement for Rights and Freedoms, the weapon misfired giving him time to reactÂ and hit the would-be assassin’s hand out of the way.
Before he could attempt a second shot theÂ unidentified suspect was tackled to the ground by security guards and delegatesÂ attending the conference in Sofia.
Television footage showed the manÂ jumpingÂ out of the audience and interrupting a speech by 58-year-oldÂ Dogan, who has ledÂ the party for almost a quarter of a century.
In a split second, he raises the gun to MrÂ Dogan’s head but it appeared to misfire.
The politician then knocked the gun away andÂ fell to the floor as he attempted to flee.
Security guards and delegates rushed onto theÂ stage where they wrestled the attacker to the ground.
A separate group surrounded a shocked MrÂ Dogan in a protective shield.
Politicians then appeared from the audienceÂ and begin rained blows on the suspect as he was pinned to the ground.
He was later pictured being taken away byÂ police bloodied and bruised.
‘Ahmed Dogan is in good health. Everything isÂ under control,’ Movement for Rights and Freedoms official Ceyhan Ibryamov toldÂ journalists.
Police said they arrested a 25-year-old manÂ from the Black Sea town of Burgas who was also carrying two knives.
The liberal MRF party represents ethnic TurksÂ and other Muslims who make up about 12 per cent of Bulgaria’s 7.3 million-strongÂ population.
Dogan is seen as one of Balkan country’s mostÂ influential political figures.
Two years ago he was acquitted after aÂ high-profile corruption trial intoÂ payments he received as a consultant for aÂ hydro power project.
The MRF was a junior partner in the previousÂ Socialist-led cabinet beforeÂ switching to the opposition following the 2009Â elections.
In 1996, former Prime Minister Andrei LukanovÂ was found shot dead near his home in Sofia, though attacks on politicians areÂ rare.
Source: The Daily Mail