Bulgaria's Ataka Party Pointedly Forfeits Immunity

Domestic | January 22, 2014, Wednesday // 10:23|  views

Volen Siderov, leader of Bulgaria's far-right nationalist party Ataka forfeits immunity. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria's Ataka party leader Volen Siderov has declared the forfeit of his parliamentary immunity, Wednesday morning.

In support of their leader, the ultranationalist Ataka MPs have also collectively given up their immunities.

Volen Siderov made a pointedly sarcastic statement from the parliamentary rostrum.

"I have noticed that Bulgaria is doing just fine, governed by such wise politicians. We have a good standard of living, we solved the unemployment and the demographic issues, foreign monopoles have been chased away," said Siderov.

"There is just one problem which hampers Bulgaria's development and its interstate relations. I hear that my immunity which all media, politicians, and social figures have demanded is the only problem in this country. I have heard that the EU is facing dissolution and Bulgaria will be dismembered due to my immunity."

"Therefore, I forfeit my parliamentary immunity," Ataka leader stated.

Following Siderov's declaration, the Deputy chairman of the parliamentary group Desislav Chukolov announced that all Ataka MPs are giving up their immunities in support of their leader.

The Deputy chair of center-right GERB Tsetska Tsacheva stressed that such political act did not have any legal value. Tsacheva explained that the ostentatious forfeit of immunity of the MPs did not matter, because their parliamentary immunities were not demanded.

Earlier in January, Volen Siderov verbally assaulted a French cultural attach? during a Sofia-Varna flight and later attacked a passenger and a police officer in a Varna airport shuttle bus, according to witnesses.

The incident prompted Chief Prosecutor, Sotir Tsatasarov, to ask the Parliament to lift his immunity as lawmaker.

Siderov's extremist party Ataka (Attack) holds 23 seats in the Bulgarian parliament and has so-far provided key support for the minority government of the Bulgarian Socialist Party and MRF.

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Tags: Volen Siderov, Ataka, immunity, ultranationalist, GERB


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