International Information Centre for Balkan Studies

Bulgaria president to convene parliament May 21

Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev said Friday (17.05.2013) he will convene parliament on May 21 in hope of breaking a political deadlock following inconclusive elections in the European Union's poorest country.

Under Bulgarian law, the president must call the assembly within a month of the May 12 election which saw neither the center-right GERB party nor its main challenger, the Socialists, win a clear majority.

"Much work lies ahead," Plevneliev said after meeting leaders of the four parties that will be represented in parliament.

"The Bulgarian people expect from parliament firm commitments, reforms and policies to resolve the problems. We need stable institutions."

The GERB government led by ex-bodyguard Boyko Borisov was forced to quit in February following angry demonstrations over high energy prices, widespread poverty and corruption.

The party is now calling for fresh elections arguing "gross violations" during the May 12 vote.

Experts, however, said the chances of this happening were practically nil.

One analyst said Borisov was simply seeking media attention.

"He (Borisov) is not really looking for the vote to be cancelled," Parvan Simeonov, an analyst for Gallup, told state television. "He is looking to bolster his popularity by playing the victim."

Borisov said he will try to form a minority government even though he acknowledged such a cabinet would likely fail to win parliament approval.

If he does not succeed, it will then be up to the Socialists, the second biggest party, to try and form a government.

Trade union leaders and analysts have warned that a prolonged political stalemate risks to exacerbate Bulgaria's economic and social woes and result in fresh street protests.

Source: http://www.eubusiness.com/news-eu/bulgaria-vote.omz


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