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Outcomes of presidential election in Bulgaria unclear

Kristalina Georgieva. Photo: peopleandcountries.com

Scandal spreads in and outside the parliament of Bulgaria, as UN Security Council votes to elect António Guterres as next Secretary General. The left-wing opposition quarreled with the ruling party Citizens for the European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) blaming it for ‘ruining’ the country. This would grow into clashes but for the parliamentary security. The opposition was unusually united, which is very important in condition of the ongoing presidential campaign.

In the meantime, the protesters and police clashed in the square between the parliament and the Statue of Emperor Alexander II. The protesters were chanting slogans against Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and the spectacularly failed candidate for UN Secretary General, European Commissioner Kristalina (Stalinka) Georgieva. There were provocateurs too. Some were speaking on behalf of the mythical pro-Russian parties and settling the still hesitating Bulgarians against Russian Federation. The leader of one of such mythical parties, United for Bulgaria, delivers speeches wrapped in the Russian flag amidst Bulgarian flags scattered all over the ground. The provocateurs once again escalate the situation providing an opportunity to the law-enforcement to interfere.

Specifically, Boyko Borisov’s government refused to support Irina Bokova (graduated from the Russian MGIMO institute), an approved candidate for UN Secretary General. She was previously ambassador to UN, deputy minister of foreign affairs, ambassador to France, and currently she occupies the post of UNESCO Director General and enjoys the sympathies and confidence of the world community, particularly, diplomats and politicians from all over the world. She had all the changes to be elected, if the Bulgarian government supported her, indeed.

In this light, a Bulgarian lawmaker representing the Alternative for Bulgarian Revival (ABR) center-left political party, a member of the Parliamentary Commission for Foreign Policy, Assistant Professor Georgy Kyuchukov said socialist António Guterres felt the support of the right-wing social democrat José Manuel Durão Barroso throughout the campaign, though they had serious disagreements concerning the domestic issues in Portugal. As a result, Portugal received a highly important and responsible international post.

Prior to the final voting, the Bulgarian Government advanced the candidature of Kristalina Georgieva. The latter would never get Moscow’s support, as it has had an active part in the anti-Russian sanctions. The ruling GERB Party could not but know about that. Nevertheless, Boyko Borisov acted under influence of Angela Merkel, Stalinka’s adviser.

Now, all the serious opposition political forces demand her to leave the post of the European commissioner. This will seriously affect her German friend too. The new Bulgarian European commissioner and vice president of the European Commission may not represent the right-wing political forces and may refuse to listen to Merkel’s “parental guidance”. Furthermore, Bulgaria already has its own, resident candidate for “the mother of the nation” – Tsetska Tsacheva, Bulgarian Parliament Speaker, GERB's new presidential candidate. Political analysts and sociologists say her rating is low – about 25%, which is even lower than the rating of her Party. They say GERB’s candidate for the post of the vice president – Admiral Plamen Manushev (graduated from St. Petersburg Naval Academy) would have more chances to be elected as president than Tsacheva.

Analysts suppose that Boyko Borisov is keen to share his power with the opposition to make a coalition government in the future. That is why he nominated a weak candidate to president to lose the election and come to power in 5 years. By another version, the position of the defense minister will be offered to the key oppositionist candidate for president, military pilot, Major General Rumen Radev, whose approval rating is about 18%. He is a Soviet graduate too. He is a former Air Force commander. This summer, Radev sent in his resignation over disagreements with President Rosen Plevneliev and Defense Minister Nikolay Nenchev, since they selected a Polish contractor instead of the Russian one to repair Bulgaria’s MiG fighter jets. The Russian MiG Concern filed a claim to the International Court. The trial is underway, but the outcome is not clear so far. However, both the sides admit that General Radev had good relations with Prime Minister Borisov and they could work together. If Radev is appointed, it will be another gesture to favor Vladimir Putin in anticipation for resumption of the South Stream. (In Bulgaria, they prefer not to notice the latest visit of the Russian president to Istanbul and the signing of the Turkish Stream project).

Non-party man Radev’s “sister-in-arm,” the candidate for vice president from Bulgarian Socialist Party Iliana Iotova is a respectful politician and journalist from a known communist family. Her father Malin Todorov, an old communist, was killed for his party affiliation. Boris Boyko considers her the key rival for the GERB candidates.

According to Georgy Kyuchukov, there are also other candidates having chances to win the election. These are Krasimir Karakachanov, nominated by the National Front electoral alliance, leader of the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (IMRO) (approval rating above 10%) and Ivaylo Kalfin, Vice Chairman of ABR. It is noteworthy that Radev (approval rating is 6%), Karakachanov and Kalfin would have much more chances to take the president’s office, but for the unfortunate and inappropriate joke by a well-known journalist and already deputy chairman of the State Duma Pyotr Tolstoy. On the day of the parliamentary elections in Russia, he told the Bulgarian TV: “We will just buy out the entire [Bulgaria]. Half of its coastline we have already bought,” he added.

Perhaps, Pyotr Tolstoy did not know that presidential election will be held in Bulgaria and that pro-American and pro-European politicians and journalists call pro-Russian ones “traitors of the nation.” Meantime, he was to know that there are hack journalists in Sofia who closely follow Moscow’s every statement on Bulgaria to raise an outcry. They are well paid by the Soros Fund, Britain’s International Institute of Strategic Studies and others. Here are the key hack journalists: Professor Ognyan Minchev, journalist – Syrian by origin – Nidal Algafari, his Iraqi colleague Mohamed Khalaf, and finally, the former ambassador of Bulgaria to Moscow Ilian Vasilyev. The latter increases the anti-Russian rhetoric, though Moscow has many methods to hush him up. For instance, they can publish data concerning the unlawful activity of Vasilyev’s wife at the Moscow Office of Balkan Pharmaceuticals.

The mess around Pyotr Tolstoy’s statement overshadowed the real, large-scale acquisition of the Bulgarian land by Bulgarians Nidal Algafari and Mohamed Khalaf. Since the Bulgarian majority is vanishing amid growing Turkish and Gypsy minorities, and migrants keep settling in the country, the only chance to preserve the territory of the Bulgarian Black Sea coast for the Slavonic-Orthodox Civilization is to buy it. God grant, Pyotr Tolstoy proves right. Ethnic Bulgarians like living surrounded by orthodox Russians.

Actually, all the three Bulgarian political blocs advocating for improvement of the relations with Russia have launched their election campaigns. Only one of them may win. At the moment, the outcome of the elections scheduled for November 6 is not clear. It is clear that there will be voting on November 13. Sociologists say Tsacheva will be the first in the first round, but may lose in the second one, if the three rivals unite.

Georgy Kolarov for EADaily

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