Bulgaria's Mestan Appeals Court Refusal to Register His Party

Politics » DOMESTIC | July 12, 2016, Tuesday // 09:06
Bulgaria: Bulgaria's Mestan Appeals Court Refusal to Register His Party Lyutvi Mestan, leader of DOST party. Photo by BGNES

Expelled DPS leader and current DOST head Lyutvi Mestan has said he appealed on Monday the ruling of a Bulgarian court which turned down his party's registration request.

In 17 pages, his party argues the decision breaches the legislation and good practices prescribed by the European Court of Human Rights.

DOST's application was declined due to the meaning of its acronym (which sounds and spells like a word for "friend" in Turkish) and the fact that a vast part of its founders were of ethnic Turkish origin.

Bulgaria's constitution (Article 11/4) bans the formation of parties "on an ethnic, racial, or religious basis". The Sofia City Court, however, has said that, although the party's application does not contravene the "letter" of the law, it violates its "spirit".

Mestan sees the development as "discrimination", pointing to the fact that acronyms of other parties are foreign words or borrowings adopted in Bulgarian, such as that of the biggest party GERB ("coat of arms", coming in Bulgarian from "Herbe", or "heritage" and "legacy"), nationalist Ataka, and a smaller organization called BASTA.

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Tags: Lyutvi Mestan, Sofia City Court, DOST, DPS
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