Bulgarians to Rally Nationwide on Liberation Day
Bulgarians are to stage a new nationwide protest rally, according to organizers, Yanko Petkov and Doncho Dudev.
The rally is scheduled for Sunday, March 3, the day Bulgaria will celebrate its National Holiday, marking the 135th anniversary of its Liberation from five centuries of Ottoman yoke.
On this occasion, the organizers are calling on all Bulgarians to participate and to march peacefully, holding flowers to show respect to those who have perished for freedom.
Over 100 000 Bulgarians took on the streets last Sunday against the political model of ruling the country. The over two-week long demonstrations started as protests against the unbearable utility bills, the monopolies and the wide-spread poverty, and later turned into a civil unrest and political demands.
There are strong disagreements among different groups of disgruntled people, but some of the demands that have emerged so far are: not adjourning the Parliament; the President appointing a program government instead of a caretaker one; drafting a Civil Participation Bill providing a 50% civil quota in all institutions; returning 51% of the shares of power utilities to the State; closing the Bulgarian Energy Holding, BEH, for draining the energy sector, summoning a Grand General Assembly, establishing a procedure to recall Members of the Parliament.
These demands, on their part, have stirred fears of an attempt to return to Communism as there have been calls for nationalization and full abolishment of the political system and of all parties.
Last Thursday, Bulgaria's Parliament approved the resignation of the government of Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, and his ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB, amidst the unprecedented since 1997 protest rallies.