EU warns Bulgaria over oligarchic model
"Germany and France, just as all of their European partners, have been closely following the crisis developing in Bulgaria, the second in less than six months: a crisis of confidence in the mode of government of the country, as the ongoing protests show," states the joint statement of Matthias Hoepfner and Philippe Autie.
"It has already become clear that Bulgarian society demands insistently that the political, administrative, judicial, and economic elite heed the principles of public interest. It is obviously concerned about the penetration of private interests in the public sphere," the statement says.
"Belonging to the European Union is a civilised choice. The oligarchic model is incompatible with it, both in Bulgaria and elsewhere: it can only lead to the creation of a state within a state," the diplomats say.
"Parliament is the natural place to hold political debate.This debate presupposes the participation of all elected political parties. However, acts of extremism and statements rooted in xenophobia and intolerance, incitement to racial, ethnic, or religious hatred and violence, provocation, and breaches of public order, are unacceptable, especially in an EU member state; it is also obvious that any country observing the rule of law must impose penalties at the very point of breach of law.
"The good governance of the country is in the interest of all Bulgarians. However, it is also in the interest of all Europeans: as taxpayers (almost 40% of the EU funds granted to Bulgaria come from German and French taxpayers), because our economies are interrelated; and simply because our fates are connected in the future," Hoepfner and Autie say. ■