Bulgarian President Withdraws Support for Government

President Rumen Radev announced on Tuesday that he is withdrawing his support from the government coalition made up of the GERB party, which has been in power for a decade, and the United Patriots.

"Today, the division is not between left and right, the capital and the provinces, but between vicious power and millions of honourable Bulgarians," Radev said.

Radev criticised the government for what he called its weak reactions to the high-profile water crisis in the city of Pernik, which has caused the resignation of a minister, and to ecological problems in other areas of the country.

He also blamed the government for a lack of much-needed reforms and for not tackling corruption.

"Institutions called on to be independent and uphold the law are now apparently rejecting it and becoming an instrument of [the government's] power," Radev added.

"This government and its way of ruling is leading Bulgaria to collapse and depriving us of our future as a nation. All of this must end. As of today, I am officially withdrawing my trust from the government, since the government is not acting in the interest of Bulgarian citizens and is responsible for the acute crisis in our society," he said.

Radev has a history of being critical towards the government led by Boyko Borissov and about corruption in the country, although his tone on Tuesday was significantly harsher than before.

But his announcement of a 'withdrawal of trust' does not have any legal significance for the government.

He did not comment on surveillance recordings connected to a potential conflict-of-interest case against him that were leaked to media a week ago.

It was the first time in the country's recent history that the prosecution has expressed suspicions...

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