Bulgaria’s ‘United Patriots’ continue to be united in name only

The three co-leaders of the United Patriots, the grouping of far-right and ultra-nationalist parties that is the minority partner in Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borissov’s coalition government, are scheduled to meet on November 20 to discuss their next steps after co-leader Valeri Simeonov’s resignation as deputy prime minister.

Hardly for the first time in 2018, the days immediately before and after the announcement on the night of November 16 that he was resigning have exposed the fissions in the grouping.

By Simeonov’s account, he informed his minority coalition partners of his step – taken a month after outrage over his offensive comments about protesting mothers of children with disabilities – though another of the co-leaders, Ataka’s Volen Siderov, said that he had no advance knowledge that Simeonov was to resign.

The third of the co-leaders, Krassimir Karakachanov, said that Simeonov had told him on Friday afternoon that he was resigning, and together the two went to see Borissov. Asked about Siderov, Karakachanov said that it had been up to Simeonov to decide who to call.

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