Quarrel Erupts as Bulgaria Elects Delegation to NATO Parliamentary Assembly
Tensions between Bulgaria’s ruling coalition and the opposition remained high on Thursday, as the Parliament elected a delegation to NATO’s Parliamentary Assembly.
Chetin Kazak, a lawmaker from the liberal Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS), was elected as chair of the delegation, which triggered discontent among the opposition center-right GERB party.
GERB suggested that the delegation should be headed on a rotating basis – but DPS MPs insisted that the center-right party had no historical contribution to Bulgaria’s NATO membership.
“DPS has significant historical merits for Bulgaria’s NATO membership, and therefore the chair of the delegation will be elected from DPS,” DPS lawmaker Yordan Tsonev.
GERB MP Krasimir Velchev argued that DPS’s greatest contribution was to the former Communist secret service in the country, ironically suggesting that a member of the party should be elected as head of CIA.
GERB’s lawmakers eventually left the sitting as a sign of protest.
Bulgarian Socialist Party MP Spas Panchev was elected as the delegation’s deputy chair. GERB’s Dobroslav Dimitrov, Valentin Radev and Plamen Manushev and BSP’s Tasko Ermenkov were elected as members of the delegation.
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