site.btaUPDATED Socialists End Talks with GERB, Will Not Participate in or Back GERB Government
BSP for Bulgaria said it ends the talks with GERB-UDF and would not back or participate in a government on the GERB mandate. "We have made a decision to end the talks with GERB for the first mandate to form a government, and we are not going to participate or back it," BSP for Bulgaria Korneliya Ninova told journalists.
"We have done enough. The chaos and hypocrisy they demonstrate cannot continue, at least for us," she said.
Ninova said that after the talks she had gathered the party's Executive Bureau and the leadership of the parliamentary group to discuss the situation. "Today we did not get any clear idea: what government with what five tasks. Only the time horizon was clear: one year," she said. Borissov acts on the principle "whoever wants it, give it to him", she said. "BSP wants a 4.5% deficit so that there is money for the people - fine. TISP want less than 3% [deficit] because they don't believe in spending - fine, give them less than 3%. Democratic Bulgaria and Continue the Change want Geshev's resignation - here is Geshev's resignation for you", Ninova explained. She said it is no way to form a government and run the country.
She reconfirmed that BSP is firmly against the export of weapons to Ukraine. "We are for diplomacy and peace, and this is one of the issues we raised in the talks," Ninova said. In her words, they were told that each party had its own claims and differences, but the government would do what it had to do, which is to export weapons to Ukraine, she added,
"We will not be a spare tyre and we won't be pressing the button for them in Parliament," Ninova said.
She also made it clear that she does trust Gabriel's statement that her government won't seek to revise the Constitution in order to allow a ratification of the Istanbul Convention.
Asked why the idea for a party referendum on whether or not to back a GERB government, was dropped, Ninova pointed out that it turned out there was nothing to ask the party members. "What should we ask the party: do you agree to export arms to Ukraine, do you agree to recognize the Istanbul Convention, do you agree with a deficit of less than 3% to cut your pensions? We would have asked them if there had been any convergence of positions on all these issues," the Socialist leader added.
She again commented that GERB had got the concept wrong: Borissov offered a party candidate who came up with his own tasks and priorities.
BSP reiterated their position that they are for a meeting between all parties to agree on five national, non-party tasks, a time horizon for such a government and then looking for an expert composition.
Before the decision not to back GERB's mandate
Speaking earlier on Monday as she went into a meeting with GERB-UDF's PM-designate Gabriel and GERB leader Boyko Borissov, Ninova did not rule out the possibility that her party would support Gabriel's cabinet proposal, but said the BSP is not willing to compromise when it comes to supplying weapons to Ukraine. She was adamant that "if this government decides to supply weapons to Ukraine, we are withdrawing right away."
The Socialist leader stressed that the decision whether to participate in a "national government, not in a GERB government and not in a coalition with GERB," will be taken by the party members. She added that they will try to convene a National Council on Tuesday.
Gabriel pointed out that she was proposing an expert government with clearly outlined deadlines and priorities, which would implement procedures related mostly to the country's budget. Her draft cabinet would not be tied to coalitions, as each party should keep its identity, she added.