Marginalized Bulgarian Rightists Elect New Leader
Bozhidar Lukarski has been elected chair of rightist Bulgarian party Union of Democratic Forces Sunday following the resignation of leader Emil Kabaivanov.
Lukarski received the majority of votes at the Union's National Conference in Sofia, where he faced off 4 other candidates, including Ivan Sotirov.
42-year-old, the new leader is lawyer by profession and until now he served as chair of UDF's Board of Control.
Previous leader Kabaivanov resigned swiftly following an unconvincing result at May 12 general elections, when his party won just 1.37% of the vote - a result below the 4% hurdle.
In Bulgaria's 2009-13 Parliament, the Union was represented within the so-called Blue Coalition, together with fellow rightists Democrats for Strong Bulgaria.
UDF's downfall started in 2004, when former leader and ex Bulgarian PM Ivan Kostov decided to part ways with his former associates, after losing elections in 2001, founding DSB.
Emil Kabaivanov was instrumental in breaking ties with Democrats for Strong Bulgaria, and the dissolution of the Blue Coalition.
Massive anti-government protests currently entering their third week have spurred talk of a new union of smaller rightist parties in Bulgaria.
The Union of Democratic Forces was the leading rightist political force in Bulgaria in the 1990s - the early years in the transition away from communism.
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