24 Bulgarian NGOs Snub Talks with PM Plamen Oresharski
The NGOs and the media that signed a protest declaration Friday against the appointment of a controversial media mogul and lawmaker for national security chief have decided to not participate in the meeting with Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski.
On Friday, the Bulgarian Parliament elected in a stunning move Delyan Peevski for Chairman of the National Security Agency (DANS).
The 24 NGOs and media wrote the following in their Monday message to Oresharski:
In response to the question whether we will participate in the meeting announced by the Government Press Center on June 17, 2013, between the Prime Minister and "representatives of NGOs that have signed the petition against the appointment of Peevski for DANS Director, we, the undersigned, inform that we will not participate in this meeting.
We maintain our claims from the Protest Statement to the National Assembly on June 14, 2013. We do not find our participation in such meeting appropriate until these demands are fulfilled.
The Friday demands were the following:
1. To wait for the publication of the new Rules of Organization and Procedure of the National Assembly (PODNS,) where is intended a text of a parliamentary procedure of background check and public hearing of the candidates for high government positions;
2. To adopt a decision that revokes the election of the Chairman of the DANS;
3. To organize a new election of Chairman of DANS according to the accepted parliamentary procedure
4. To vote again for of Chairman of DANS.
The statement is signed by:
"Alpha Research" Agency for Marketing and Social Research, Boryana Dimitrova, Managing Partner;
Association "ACCESS-Sofia," Valeri Rusanov, Chairman of the Management Board;
Association of European Journalists – Bulgaria, Kristina Hristova, Chairman of the Management Board;
BlueLink Information Network, Pavel Antonov, Executive Coordinator and Editor;
Bulgarian Institute for Legal Initiatives, Bilyana Gyaurova-Wegertseder, Director;
Bulgarian Helsinki Committee, Attorney Margarita Ilieva, Director of Law Program;
Bulgarian School of Politics "Dimitry Panitza," Sasha Bezuhanova, Chairman of the Management Board;
"Capital" newspaper, Stanka Tosheva, Editor-in-Chief;
dnevnik.bg, Velislava Popova, Editor-in-Chief;
European Council on Foreign Relations – Sofia, Dimitar Bechev, Director;
"Open Society" Institute, Sofia, Georgi Stoychev, Executive Director;
Institute for Market Economics, Svetla Kostadinova, Executive Director;
Institute for Public Environment Development, Antoaneta Tsoneva, Chairman of the Management Board;
Institute for Regional and International Studies, Ognyan Minchev, Director;
International Center for Minority Studies and Intercultural Relations, Antonina Zhelyazkova, Director;
NGO Links, Teodora Gandova, Chairman of the Management Board;
"Access to Information" Program, Aleksandar Kashamov, Head of Legal Department;
RiskMonitor, Stefan Popov, Executive Director;
Foundation for Local Government Reform, Zdravko Sechkov, Executive Director;
CEGA Foundation, Rumyan Sechkov, Executive Director;
Center for the Study of Democracy, Ognyan Shentov, Chairman of the Management Board;
The Red House Center for Culture and Debate, Desislava Gavrilova and Cvetelina Yosifova, co-chairs of the Council of Founders;
Centre for Liberal Strategies, Anna Ganeva Executive Director, Ivan Krastev, Chairman;
Center for Social Practices, Evgeniy Daynov, Chairman;
Speaking in an interview for bTV, he said the Friday decision of the government and the Parliament to appoint the controversial media mogul to lead DANS has been a mistake that sparked mass protest rallies in the country over the weekend.
Oresharski pledged a large public debate in nominating a new person to lead DANS, noting he or she must be a very decisive individual in order to successfully oppose organized crime.
The PM was very evasive in answering a question if he has been, indeed, the one to nominate Peevski.
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