Ties with Russia Need Pragmatic Approach, Bulgaria's Last King Tells TASS
Bulgaria's last King and former Prime Minister Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha has urged a more pragmatic approach between Bulgaria and Russia based on what is useful in bilateral ties.
"There is now some tension between our countries, but I am not saying it will last long," he has told TASS news agency [RU].
"Problems are always of a temporary and conjunctural nature. This is now a fad that pursues short-term interests. In relations between Bulgaria and Russia one should see what is real, pragmatic and useful."
Asked to comment on Europe, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha has said there is "no real alternative" to the European Union for the continent and the current crisis inside the bloc can and must be overcome.
"Had we not been members of the EU in 2008, in times of economic crisis, it is not clear where we would be now."
"The project of United Europe should, despite criticism, persist. How much time did America exist before becoming the United States? Europe just needs time to become one."
On the forthcoming early election, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha has said he is "confident that Bulgaria needs a maximally broad coalition that could involve the biggest possible number of voters."
"Political convictions should not impede civilized conversation [and] the definition of priorities in one's work".
Asked about his personal plans, he has said it is risky for a nearly 80-year-old person to look far into the future.
"I wrote my memoirs, specially for my children... The book was out in Bulgarian, French, Turkish and Spanish. I hope it will soon be published in English, Italian and German."
"I was happy to live in two ages. I was born here, in Bulgaria, and lived as crown prince and as King, afterwards left the country for 50 years. I learned a lot and, eventually, returned to Bulgaria. I thank God he gave me the opportunity to see the life of my country for such a long period of time."
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