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Critical Time Ahead for EU Trust in Bulgaria - Top Prosecutor

Date: 27.07.2009

"The next six months will be critical for Bulgaria in terms of its determination to combat crime and restore the trust of EU member states", the country's chief prosecutor has warned.

Boris Velchev made the statement a week after Bulgaria's prime minister-designate Boyko Borisov said the country must strike hard at high-level corruption within six months to restore the flagging faith of the European Union.

Borisov delivered a stern pep talk to Bulgaria's top prosecutors just days after his GERB party secured a landslide general election victory. The warning came on the back of widespread anger with the ruling Socialists' dismal record on graft and organised crime.

The EU froze more than EUR 500 M in aid to Bulgaria last year as punishment for its failure to fight corruption. The country has jailed only one mafia boss and not a single senior politician for graft since 1989.

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