Bulgaria caretaker PM ‘asked but not pushed’ Interior Ministry chief to quit

Bulgaria’s caretaker Prime Minister Ognyan Gerdzhikov said on February 24 that he had asked former Interior Ministry chief secretary Georgi Kostov to resign, but denied that he had pressured or threatened Kostov.

Kostov, whose dismissal was decreed by President Roumen Radev on February 22 at the recommendation of Gerdzhikov’s caretaker administration, has referred alleged actions by Gerdzhikov and interim Interior Minister Plamen Uzunov to the Prosecutor-General.

The former Interior Ministry chief secretary, appointed by the then-Borissov government in March 2015, has said that he can prove that he was threatened with a campaign to discredit him unless he stepped down.

Gerdzhikov told reporters that he believed that he had acted correctly in asking Kostov to resign after the caretaker Interior Minister lost confidence in him.

The caretaker government alleged that Kostov was involved in exerting political pressure on senior ministry staff in 2015 and 2016. Kostov denies this.

Asked by reporters about claims that the conversation between Gerdzhikov and Kostov had been recorded, Gerdzhikov said: “I have no idea”.

He said that he would be glad if it had been recorded, because there was “something there” that would not be in Kostov’s favour.




The Sofia Globe staff

The Sofia Globe - the Sofia-based fully independent English-language news and features website, covering Bulgaria, the Balkans and the EU. Sign up to subscribe to sofiaglobe.com's daily bulletin through the form on our homepage. https://www.patreon.com/user?u=32709292