EP to Debate Rule of Law in Bulgaria on Feb 6
The leadership of the European Parliament has approved and included in its agenda a plenary debate on freedom and rule of law in Bulgaria.
The debate will take place on February 6, the Bulgarian news agency BTA reported Thursday, citing insider sources in the EP.
Thursday was the deadline to approve or reject the request of the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, ALDE, and its Chair, Guy Verhofstadt.
The proposal was supported by the group of the Socialists.
Earlier in January, Verhofstadt announced the request was related to the "Dogan incident."
In the heels of his anouncement, the European People's Party, EPP, returned the fire in a statement of support for the government of Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, and his ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB. The EPP group condemned the attack on the honorary, lifetime leader of Bulgaria's ethnic Turkish party Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS), Ahmed Dogan, but stressed the incident should not be politicized.
GERB is a member of EPP.
The online Dnevnik news agency reminds that according to the EPP code, the daily agenda can include one or two time periods of up to 60 minutes for debates on human rights violations, democracy and rule of law.
The final agenda is distributed to the MEPs at least three hours before the start of the session.
Changes can be proposed by a Committee or a political group with at least 40 MEPs.
ALDE has 85 MEPs with the Bulgarian ones elected on the ballots of DPS and the now nearly-extinct National Movement for Stability and Prosperity, NMSP, of former Tsar and Prime Minister, Simeon Saxe-Coburg.
Bulgarian Movement for Rights and Freedoms party leader Ahmed Dogan was attacked by Oktay Enimehmedov, 25, also an ethnic Turk, with a gas pistol at the party congress in Sofia on January 19.
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