Rocky path to unity for Bulgaria’s Reformist Bloc

The Reformist Bloc, an alliance of a number of right-wing and centrist parties currently lacking parliamentary seats, appears to be on track to form a political union by its set deadline of the end of 2013 – but will shed one of its member parties along the way.

Formed after the May 2013 national parliamentary elections, the Reformist Bloc already has shed one of its initial member parties, the Green Party, reportedly because that party envisages working with its European namesakes in the 2014 European Parliament elections.

That has left the bloc with fairly well-known parties formerly represented in Parliament, the Democrats for a Strong Bulgaria (DSB) and the Union of Democratic Forces (UDF), along with former European commissioner Meglena Kouneva’s Bulgaria for Citizens, Bulgarian Agrarian National Union, and the National Party Freedom and Honour.

Blue Unity, a small party recently founded around former UDF leader Nadezhda Neynski, seems on its way out after DSB leader Radan Kanev announced that he had requested the suspension of negotiations with Neynski’s party.

Speaking to public broadcaster Bulgarian National Television on December 16, Kanev said that he had requested this suspension of negotiations with Blue Unity because of differences of positions and also because of media appearances by Neynski, which he described as a revival of the bad practice of speaking publicly while negotiations were ongoing.

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