Bulgarian Nationalists 'Ataka' Cut Off Support for Borisov's Minority Govt

Domestic | July 8, 2011, Friday // 17:28|  views

Nationalist leader Volen Siderov. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency

Bulgaria's nationalist party Ataka has abandoned the minority government of Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and center-right ruling party GERB leaving the Cabinet's survival to depend on a dozen of "independent" renegade MPs.

After sticking by Borisov for two years, and providing GERB with a de facto ruling majority in Parliament, on Friday Ataka leader Volen Siderov formally announced that his formation will no longer back the Borisov Cabinet.

The shift in the relations between Borisov and Siderov has already been visible as in June the Cabinet survived a no confidence vote on economic crisis policies initiated by the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) and the ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS) with the votes of the 117 GERB MPs and 9 independents (former members of the conservative party RZS and the nationalist Ataka), while its traditional earlier allies, Ataka with 17 MPs and the Blue Coalition MPs, did not take part at all in the voting. (The no confidence motion was overturned with 124 MPs against, 70 in favor, and 2 abstaining.)

The newly acquired significance of the 10 renegade MPs as being crucial for the survival of the Borisov Cabinet has become tangible after on Thursday US Ambassador James Warlick in Sofia had a meeting with them. The USA has traditionally provided Borisov with strong support.  

On Friday, Ataka's leader Siderov read a declaration in Parliament making it clear that Ataka is now in opposition, and his party provided parliamentary support for Borisov "with the idea of being a good-wishing partner whose advice GERB had to comply with" but this failed to materialize.

"GERB accepted us simply as a transmission mechanism, a crutch, an instrument that will be back their rule," the nationalists' leader stated in Parliament. "GERB's rule is threatened of failure. The situation in Bulgaria is bad for a huge part of the population while it is good only for a small percentage. The social polarization is worsening even though by Constitution Bulgaria is supposed to be a welfare state," Siderov argued.

He accused the government of working for big business and allowing foreign-owned monopolies "to continue draining" the Bulgarian economy, a situation bound to lead to GERB's collapse, he said.

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Tags: Volen Siderov, Ataka, GERB, Boyko Borisov, Prime Minister, Cabinet, government, minority government, MPs, Volen Siderov, RZS, Ataka, Valentin Nikolov, Kiril Gumnerov, Dimitar Chukarski, Ognyan Peychev, US Ambassador, James Warlick, no-confidence vote, opposition


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