They included a former president, the ambassadors of France and Israel, the former Bulgarian ambassador to the UN, representatives of a dozen embassies, including Germany, Denmark, Ireland and Greece, many local dignitaries and media, and citizens with an interest in Bulgaria's recent history.
The keynote speaker was Nancy Schiller, the President of the America for Bulgaria Foundation, with whose support A Guide to Communist Bulgaria was published. The book was presented by Professor Ivaylo Znepolski, the founder of the Studies of the Recent Past Institute in Sofia.
The three-volume book, which has already generated significant interest internationally, was published in both English and Bulgarian. It researches, documents and puts in context the material heritage of Bulgarian Communism: from the crumbling prefabricated living estates to the abandoned military bases and border posts, from the monuments of Second World War pro-Soviet guerrillas to the powerful nationalism of the 1970s, and from the failed and at times idiosyncratic megaprojects to the funny street signs giving instructions to citizens on how to maintain their personal cleanliness.
Nancy Schiller, the president of the America for Bulgaria Foundation, welcomes guests at the book launch
Israeli Ambassador Irit Lillian and husband Alon Cohen
Authors Dimana Trankova and Mihail Gruev
Former Bulgarian Ambassador to the UN Stefan Tafrov, executive editor of Kultura newspaper Koprinka Chervenkova and literary critic Professor Mihail Nedelchev
Human rights lawyer Alexandar Kashumov
Professor Ivaylo Znepolski
Former President Petar Stoyanov
Marcus Haas of the German Embassy and author Anthony Georgieff
Anthony Georgieff speaks to Bulgarian National Television
Sevda Shishmanova, the former programme director of BNT
BNT presenter Georges Anguelov
Elena Filipova and Simona Zdraveva of Vagabond Media
Author Dimana Trankova
Author Georgi Lozanov