Ousted Leader of Bulgaria’s DPS Lyutvi Mestan Launches DOST Political ProjectDomestic | February 27, 2016, Saturday // 17:19| views
Lyutvi Mestan, the expelled leader of Bulgaria’s predominantly ethnic Turk Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS), said on Saturday that his new political project, DOST, will be ‘a radical, pro-NATO and pro-EU party’.
Mestan repeated his claim that DPS honorary chairman Ahmed Dogan had served pro-Russian interests in Bulgaria by accusing him in December of siding with Turkey in Ankara’s spat with Moscow over last year’s downing of a Russian warplane by Turkish Air Force.
“He [Dogan] renounced the true path, which DPS had followed under my chairmanship – the path of authentic Euro-Atlanticism,” Mestan said at a meeting of the inaugurating committee of his DOST project on Saturday, according to BGNES.
Mestan had repeatedly denied suggestions that DOST would be a pro-Turkish party.
On Saturday, he said that the new party would be “a true, authentic liberal party in Bulgaria”.
DOST would be a champion of liberal democracy relying on support not only from those disappointed with DPS but also from all other Bulgarian citizens irrespective of their ethnic origin for whom the country's ethnic and religious diversity is an asset rather than a security risk, Mestan said.
The inaugural meeting of the new party is expected to be called by the end of March. The meeting has to be attended by at least 500 party members for its decisions to be valid. At least 2,500 signatures are needed to found a poltical party in Bulgaria.
DOST is the acronym for Democrats for Responsibility, Solidarity and Tolerance in Bulgarian, which also sounds and spells like a word for "friend" in Turkish.