Europe

Bulgaria new election urged amid mass protests

Bulgaria anti-government rally in Sofia, 4 Jul 13 Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Bulgaria's daily anti-government rallies are a sign of political paralysis

Bulgaria's president has said another early election should take place to deal with daily anti-government street protests.

"If nothing else helps, if there are not even attempts to reach agreement, then the only democratic solution is elections," Rosen Plevneliev said.

The parliament, not the president, has the power to call new elections.

Bulgaria has been in political turmoil for months. The current government took office after a snap election in May.

"There have been incessant protests in Bulgaria for 22 days now and I still do not see politicians making a clear effort to take notice of what is happening and explain to the nation in plain terms what they will do about it," President Plevneliev complained in a national address.

The latest demonstrations, by thousands of people in the capital Sofia and other cities, erupted in mid-June over the controversial appointment of a media mogul, Delyan Peevski, as head of the national security agency.

Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski, who heads a Socialist-led coalition, later revoked the appointment and apologised, but protests against his coalition government continued.

His predecessor as prime minister, Boiko Borisov, resigned in February after big street protests about high electricity prices, austerity measures and mismanagement.

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