Bulgarian President Plevneliev expects further attempts to discredit him

Bulgarian President Rossen Plevneliev, who has taken a positive view of the anti-government protests that have continued daily for more than a month, says that he expects further attacks against him in an attempt to discredit him.

Plevneliev took office as head of state in January 2012 after being elected on the ticket of former ruling party, Boiko Borissov’s centre-right GERB.

The “cost of living” protests in early 2013 precipitated, after an incident of violence in the centre of capital city Sofia, the resignation of Borissov and a political crisis dealt with at the time by the appointment of a caretaker government and a bringing forward of parliamentary elections.

These elections handed GERB the largest share of votes, but Borissov faced only hostile parties in Parliament, which opened the way for the formation of a government by the Bulgarian Socialist Party assisted by the Movement for Rights and Freedoms, Bulgaria’s largely ethnic Turkish party, and ultra-nationalists Ataka.

When this government, which first embarked on a campaign of retribution against GERB and people close to it, then abortively appointed a then-MP for the MRF, Delyan Peevski, to head the State Agency for National Security, hugely-supported protests emerged to demand the resignation of the administration, far-reaching electoral reforms and fresh elections.

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