Former Bulgarian President Calls on Cabinet to Nominate Bokova for UN Chief

Politics » DOMESTIC | January 14, 2016, Thursday // 15:01
Bulgaria: Former Bulgarian President Calls on Cabinet to Nominate Bokova for UN Chief Former Bulgarian President and leader of left-wing Alternative for Bulgarian Revival (ABV) Georgi Parvanov. Photo: BGNES

Former Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov called on the government to immediately nominate Irina Bokova as a candidate for UN Secretary-General, threatening to withdraw his party's support if the cabinet fails to do so.

Parvanov is leader of left-wing Alternative for Bulgarian Revival (ABV), which is one of the two parties supporting the coalition government.

Speaking at a press conference on Thursday, he expressed his party's firm support for the nomination of Bokova, who is the incumbent UNESCO Director-General.

Parvanov reminded that a month ago the UN General Assembly had sent a letter to the Bulgarian government asking the country to nominate a candidate for the position.

The former president criticised the foreign ministry for delaying the nomination, adding that such a delay could have a negative impact on the success of the Bulgarian candidate.

He warned that the unclear stance of the government on the nomination could radicalise the attitude of ABV towards the foreign policy of the cabinet.

According to him, Bulgaria should seize the opportunity as the country was presented with the unique chance to have a successful nomination.

In his words, there should be a large-scale national campaign in favour of Bokova as such an opportunity will most likely never again occur.

He identified a hypothetical failure of the state to back Bokova as a "catastrophe for Bulgarian diplomacy".

Parvanov reminded that back in 2013 the government of then Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski had decided to back Bokova.

Several days ago, Bokova said that she would not run for the position if she does not enjoy the support of the government.

In the last months, the name of European Commission Vice-President Kristalina Georgieva has often been mentioned as another possible Bulgarian candidate for the position.

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Tags: Bulgaria, Irina Bokova, Kristalina Georgieva, UN, Secretary-General, UNESCO, EU, ABV, Georgi Parvanov, nomination

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