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Bulgarian Parties Reach Coalition Deal, Ending Months Of Deadlock

Kiril Petkov speaks before parliament in Sofia on December 3.
Kiril Petkov speaks before parliament in Sofia on December 3.

Bulgaria's new anti-corruption We Continue the Change party (PP) has reached a coalition deal with three smaller parties, giving the country a new government after eight months of political deadlock.

Kiril Petkov, the co-leader of PP, said on December 10 that an agreement was reached with the Socialists, the populist There is Such a People party, and the center-right faction Democratic Bulgaria.

"The agreement has just been signed by all our coalition partners," said Petkov, who was nominated as Bulgaria's next prime minister.

"The document is 140 pages and will really enable this coalition to be strong and work for a long time," he added.

Petkov is now expected to present his nominations for ministers to President Rumen Radev on December 11 and get approval from parliament as early as December 13.

Former Prime Minister Boyko Borisov stepped down in April after he lost his majority in parliament following months of anti-corruption protests against him and his GERB party..

Two elections in April and July failed to produce governments because of unclear majorities and disagreements between political parties on a new cabinet, leaving the European Union's poorest member state in the hands of an interim administration.

The new government is expected to overhaul the country's anti-corruption agency, boost COVID-19 vaccinations, and take steps to shield citizens from rising energy costs.

Less than 30 percent of adults are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in the country, the lowest rate in the European Union.

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