President Plevneliev, protesters protest at Peevski appointment as SANS boss

Bulgarian President Rossen Plevneliev withdrew from a scheduled attendance of the opening of Danube Bridge 2 on June 14, and announced that he was convening the Consultative Council on National Security, after the Bulgarian Socialist Party and the Movement for Rights and Freedoms voted in controversial MP and media boss Delyan Peevski as the new head of the State Agency for National Security.

Ironically, because of the specifications of the law on the consultative council, among those on the list of those who attend such meetings is the head of the State Agency for National Security.

The meeting is to be held on June 20.

Earlier this week, Plevneliev had announced that he would go ahead with decreeing the promulgation of the amendments approved by the new Parliament to the State Agency for National Security Act, in spite of calls by former ruling party GERB for him to veto it.

Plevneliev held extensive consultations on the amendments, including with representatives of the judiciary, academia, political parties for and against, and the foreign diplomatic corps, before saying that he would let the amendments go ahead.

Among the provisions of the amendments was one which changed the system of appointment of the SANS chief to putting it in the hands of Parliament, voting on the recommendation of the Prime Minister.

The post was vacant because when the new socialist government came into office, the then-chief of SANS, Konstantin Kazakov, stepped down to give the new government a free hand to make its own appointment.

In other reactions to the Peevski appointment, some of the representatives of groups of street protesters who had been scheduled to meet Plamen Oresharski, named as prime minister in May of the Bulgarian Socialist Party government, withdrew from the meeting.

Instead, the protesters announced a protest to be held on the evening of June 14 against the appointment of Peevski.

In Parliament, where the timeframe between the announcement of Peevski’s nomination and the vote to approve it was about 15 minutes, former ruling party GERB – which had walked out of the House in protest – returned to lodge a formal declaration objecting to the Peevski appointment, and then walked out again.




The Sofia Globe staff

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