Judges Protest against Top Body, Working Conditions in Sofia

Society | December 9, 2016, Friday // 18:33
Bulgaria: Judges Protest against Top Body, Working Conditions in Sofia

Judges from the Sofia Regional Court (SRS) demonstrated on Friday over problems at their institution largely blamed on the country's top decisionmaking body.

Metodi Lalov, who on Friday resigned as SRS chair, also joined their action in front of the Supreme Judicial Council (VSS).

Lalov stepped down, citing lack of will to work under the present conditions, with an excessive burden placed on every judge working there as at least 1000 court cases are assigned per person every year.

Public broadcaster quotes Lalov as saying the official VSS representative, Dimitar Uzunov, sent him a message on Viber calling on him to stop the protest.

Demonstrators argue the VSS did little to address their needs, responding to their call for help with "repression".

Earlier, the demonstration had also been announced as a sign of solidarity with a decision to persecute judge Miroslava Todorova through disciplinary proceedigs.

Tensions have been on the rise within the judiciary for several years, with groups within the VSS, at various courts and in rivalling political parties disputing the way Bulgaria should carry out its judicial reform, considered an urgency by EU institutions.

Bulgaria remains the only EU country with no high-profile politician having been placed behind bars, despite evidence of widespread corruption.

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Tags: Sofia Regional Court, VSS, Metodi Lalov, judges, priotest
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