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Bulgaria: Ex-King's Movement To Get Half Of Parliament Seats

Sofia, 19 June 2001 (RFE/RL) -- Regional poll officials confirmed today that the National Movement Simeon II of the former Bulgarian king won exactly half the seats in the 240-seat legislature in weekend elections. Final official results will be released by the Central Election Commission tomorrow or Thursday (21 June).

Leaders of Bulgaria's Union of Democratic Forces are meeting today in Sofia amid speculation that Prime Minister Ivan Kostov might quit as party chief following his electoral defeat.

The party was trounced by the former king's movement and is expected to receive only 51 seats in parliament. Before the election, it held a majority in the chamber.

Georgi Petkanov, a spokesman for the National Movement Simeon II, said coalition talks on the shape of the future government will likely start tomorrow.