Bulgarian government survives no-confidence vote
SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — Bulgaria’s ruling coalition has survived a no-confidence vote called by the opposition, which accused the government of failing to deal with surging crime or to guarantee the rule of law.
The 240-member parliament on Friday rejected the motion in a 131-104 vote. Five lawmakers were absent.
It was the second vote on Prime Minister Boyko Borissov’s center-right government, which came to power last year.
The opposition cited a spectacular daylight escape of two inmates from Sofia’s main prison, the assassinations of public figures that remain unsolved by the authorities and a reported rise in crime.
The ruling GERB party dismissed the accusations, saying the Socialists cannot provide an effective alternative and were only trying to cast a shadow on the country’s image as it successfully concludes its first term as president of the European Council.
The Balkan country has been repeatedly criticized by Brussels for its lack of progress in fighting corruption and organized crime, which is seen as a hurdle to its aspirations to join the EU’s visa-free Schengen area and the eurozone.