Sofia - Bulgaria's Interior Ministry on Monday launched a nationwide campaign against burglaries and looting, officials confirmed.

Svetoslav Lazarov, chief secretary at the ministry, said that police were being deployed to patrol remote regions of Bulgaria where violent crime is on the rise.

“(Police) units will stay as long as necessary,” Lazarov said in an interview on state television.

The initiative comes in response to criticism from the country's conservative opposition, which issued a vote of no confidence in relation to the governing Socialists' security policies.

The issue is set to be debated in parliament later on Monday.

Burglaries and looting are on the rise in Bulgaria, with the country's north-west and the villages surrounding Sofia among the worst affected regions.

The crime wave has taken on an increasingly violent character, with several house owners killed as a result.

Sapa-dpa