The votes of Bulgarian Socialist Party and Movement for Rights and Freedoms MPs, the parties in the ruling axis, defeated a motion of no confidence in the cabinet on February 12 2014.
The motion of no confidence was the third in a series tabled by centre-right opposition party GERB since the current government came to power in May 2013. The third motion was tabled on the grounds of the government’s failings in the security sector.
A total of 217 MPs in the 240-member 42nd National Assembly voted. Ninety-three, all from GERB, voted in favour, 116 voted against and eight – all from Volen Siderov’s ultra-nationalist Ataka party – abstained.
At the moment the result was announced, two young women in the public gallery held up a banner reading “Оставка” (“Resignation”, the rallying cry of several months of continuing widely-supported anti-government protests).
After a parliamentary official intervened and tried to grab away the banner, it floated down on to the seats of BSP MPs, where a socialist member grabbed it and crumpled it up.
(Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)