Bulgaria Names New PM Pending Elections

Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev announced an interim government on August 5, naming Georgi Bliznashki, a prominent constitutional expert and former Socialist member of parliament as the country’s new interim prime minister.

General elections are scheduled in Bulgaria for October 5 following the resignation of the Socialist-led coalition government of Plamen Oresharski.

It resigned last month following the Socialists’ poor performance at the EU elections and a series of scandals including a banking panic.

“This is the second caretaker government I have appointed in two years,” President Plevneliev noted as he presented the cabinet, “which unfortunately is a clear indication of the political instability which we must overcome together.”

Bliznashki was expelled from the Socialists in March over his harsh criticism of Oresharski’s government and the party leadership.

Widely seen as a pro-Western Social Democrat, the political analyst Veselin Avraamov said the hope was that he might forge a new consensus on the bitterly divided country. The centre-right GERB party is currently on course to win the general election and form the next government, polls show.

Plevneliev tasked the new government with stabilizing the country and preparing for the October election, negotiating a Partnership Agreement with the European Commission for 2014-2020, and preparing key reforms in the energy sector.

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