The presidential electoral alliance between two of Bulgaria’s socialist parties, that briefly seemed to have seen them drawing closer together, is now instead seeing them distancing themselves from each other with increasing acrimony.
For a few days, it seemed that the opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), the second-largest party in the National Assembly, and Georgi Purvanov’s ABC, one of the two smallest groups in Parliament, had found common ground in their respective support for former Air Force chief Roumen Radev as their presidential candidate.
But now, BSP leader Kornelia Ninova is accusing ABC of “unprincipled behaviour” regarding the election coalition proposal, while ABC has responded with an accusation that the BSP, by walking away from the coalition proposal, is handing the elections to Prime Minister Boiko Borissov’s centre-right GERB party.
The developments come in the week after, at a meeting lasting several hours, the BSP voted Radev as its candidate – hardly unanimously, as it took a number of rounds of voting to eliminate other candidates.
Ninova, BSP leader since May after being elected to replace Mihail Mikov whose two-year leadership had seen the ailing party’s fortunes worsen, has been irked by accusations that Purvanov, a former BSP leader, former head of state and former State Security agent, got his way in the nomination of Radev.
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