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Outgoing Premier Kiril Petkov rejects Ambassador Mitrofanova's ultimatum

Photo: Facebook/ Kiril Petkov

“We Continue the Change” has nominated outgoing Minister of Finance Assen Vassilev for Prime Minister in the new cabinet. “We will not allow Bulgaria to take the wrong direction, prosecutors to continue to stay idle and foreign diplomats to give ultimatums”, outgoing Premier Kiril Petkov said in a video address on the occasion of the expulsion of 70 Russian diplomats from Bulgaria.

Outgoing deputy Premier and leader of the Bulgarian Socialist Party Kornelia Ninova called on Prime Minister Petkov to resign immediately because of the crisis. She also called on President Radev to dismiss the Chairman of the State Agency for National Security. Kornelia Ninova insisted that the Parliament take a decision on the Russia case, but her request was rejected by GERB party.

GERB fully supports the cabinet’s actions regarding the expulsion of 70 Russian diplomats from Bulgaria, although it was done in an amateurish manner, the leader of GERB and former Premier Boyko Borissov said at a briefing held earlier on Friday. Boyko Borissov stressed that the government must not give in to Ambassador Eleonora Mitrofanova' ultimatum, because this would mean capitulation and ceding of sovereignty.

The leader of the GERB parliamentary group, Desislava Atanasova, added that the responsibility for the diplomatic scandal with the Russian Federation lies entirely with the outgoing Prime Minister Kiril Petkov and "shows only one thing - the total incompetence of Kiril Petkov and his government to govern this country". Atanasova predicts that even if "We continue the Change" manages to get 121 MPs and forms a second government with Assen Vassilev as prime minister, it will be unstable and will probably not withstand another vote of no confidence. 

In support of Petkov's decision, "Democratic Bulgaria" MP Ivaylo Mirchev told "Nova TV" that his party has every serious reason to worry that the Russian spy network has infiltrated the top ranks of the state. Mirchev was adamant that the Council of chairmen of parliamentary parties had received extremely worrying information regarding Russian influence in Bulgaria and said that there was no doubt that Russia was involved in the explosions at the arms factories in Bulgaria.

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