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Bulgaria Votes in General Elections on July 5

Date: 27.04.2009

Bulgarians will head to the polls to elect the country's next parliament on July 5, the president decided.

A press release, circulated to the media from the presidency press office, said that following consultations with parliamentary-represented parties and coalitions , the president issued decrees dealing with the organization of the elections and the members of the Central Electoral Commission.

The decrees will be promulgated in the State Gazette on April 30.

President Georgi Parvanov concluded that he looked forward to free and fair elections and a high turnout.

Bulgaria will hold European Parliament elections about a month before the general elections, on June 7.

Polls show that the opposition GERB party of popular Sofia mayor Boyko Borisov is expected to garner 26% of the votes and the ruling Socialists are likely to get 16% in the European Parliament elections.

Were elections for MEPs held now, the ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms, key coalition partner of the Socialists, would gather 9% of the votes, followed by their arch rivals, the nationalist Ataka with 6%, according to the survey of local pollsters MBMD.

No more than 5% of the respondents said they will support the coalition of the two biggest right-wing parties, Democrats for Strong Bulgaria (DSB) and the United Democratic Forces (UDF), while the conservative right-wing Order, Law and Justice Party will collect 2% of the votes.

The third partner in the current ruling coalition, the party of former king Simeon Saxe-Coburg, is expected to garner hardly 1% of the votes.

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