NEWS WATCH: Bulgaria Marches Against Poverty, Corruption

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By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent BosNewsLife

Thousands have demonstrated against poverty and corruption.
Thousands have demonstrated against poverty and corruption.


SOFIA/BUDAPEST (BosNewsLife)-- Tens of thousands of people have protested across Bulgaria against poverty and corruption. The latest demonstrations came despite the resignation of the government and promises of early elections.

Waving flags and chanting slogans against the ruling elite, demonstrators in Bulgaria's capital Sofia and other major cities used a national holiday to ask attention for deep rooted grievances.

Besides shouting against poverty and corruption, they also demanded legislative amendments to allow the participation of common citizens in politics.

The protests followed earlier massive demonstrations with people shouting "Mafia, Mafia", amid outrage over rising electricity prices by as much as 13 percent in what is the European Union's poorest member state.

FOREIGN COMPANIES BLAMED

Protesters blamed foreign companies as well as high level corruption. It gradually grew into a civil unrest challenging the established order.

Two weeks ago, clashes between police and protesters left two dozen people injured and prompted Prime Minister Boiko Borisov's center-right cabinet to quit.

He has since been hospitalized with high blood pressure.

The government's resignation cleared the way for early elections, to be held on May 12.
Yet, Bulgarians have expressed their frustration with politics and what they see as unfulfilled promises of EU membership.

The Balkan nation joined the 27-nation block in 2007.

(BosNewsLife's NEWS WATCH is a regular look at key general news developments from especially, but not limited to, (former) Communist countries and other autocratic states impacting the Church and/or other compassionate professionals).   



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