IT: Resignation of Government Fails to Quell Angry Protests
Tens of thousands of people have joined angry protest marches across Bulgaria, after the resignation of the government failed to quell public fury over poverty and corruption.
Prime minister Boiko Borisov's centre-right cabinet stepped down last week after rallies against spiralling electricity prices turned violent.
The government's departure did not soothe public dissatisfaction, however, and demonstrators in many towns and cities yesterday demanded not only lower power bills but a change of political culture and tough action against graft among the country's elite.
Bulgaria is the European Union's poorest member, with an average monthly wage of about €400 and a standard pension of about €130.
Demonstrators in Sofia handed a list of demands to President Rosen Plevneliev, who was whistled at and booed by some protesters. They included calls for the state to retake control of power companies that are blamed for a severe price increases and for major changes to electoral law.
Mr Plevneliev is expected to name a caretaker government this week and set a date for early elections, but many protesters demanded that he refrain from dissolving parliament and name a cabinet capable of implementing significant reforms.