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Bulgaria: Military Personnel
Country Study > Chapter 5 > National Security > Military Personnel


Bulgaria traditionally had more troops in uniform per capita than the other Warsaw Pact countries. At one time, it had almost as many soldiers as Romania, a country with a population three times larger than Bulgaria's. Total personnel in the BPA was drastically reduced from 152,000 to 107,000 between 1988 and 1991, however. The Ministry of National Defense cut the officer corps by over 1,700 and general officers by 78. The military strongly opposed additional reductions on the grounds that they would seriously jeopardize national security. Military spokesmen pointed to the 300,000- to 350,000-soldier Turkish force in eastern Thrace and western Anatolia as the key factor in determining the appropriate personnel level for the BPA. The unilateral reduction between 1988 and 1991 occurred against a backdrop of sharp domestic political debate over reducing the basic two-year military conscription term to eighteen months.

Data as of June 1992

Last Updated: June 1992

Editor's Note: Country Studies included here were published between 1988 and 1998. The Country study for Bulgaria was first published in 1992. Where available, the data has been updated through 2008. The date at the bottom of each section will indicate the time period of the data. Information on some countries may no longer be up to date. See the "Research Completed" date at the beginning of each study on the Title Page or the "Data as of" date at the end of each section of text. This information is included due to its comprehensiveness and for historical purposes.

Note that current information from the CIA World Factbook, U.S. Department of State Background Notes, Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Country Briefs, the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Country Profiles, and the World Bank can be found on

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