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The World

August 22, 1989

Turkey announced that it will close its border with Bulgaria today in protest against what it called Sofia's "irresponsible" policy of seeking "to rid itself of the Turkish minority problem by expelling (ethnic Turks) under its own terms and assimilating the rest, who were more pliable." But Turkey said it is "ready to accept all of its kinsmen within the framework of a comprehensive agreement with Bulgaria." More than 300,000 ethnic Turks have fled to Turkey since May after protests against Bulgarian moves to assimilate them into a majority Slavic community. Bulgaria insists the Turks are leaving voluntarily.

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