Bulgaria vote heads for tight finish
Exit polls in Bulgaria’s parliamentary elections give the centre-right Gerb party of ex-PM Boiko Borisov a narrow lead over its socialist rivals. With nearly 70% of the ballots counted, Gerb has 31.4% of the vote, followed by the BSP with 27.4%. But Mr Borisov has failed to win the election outright and must now try to form a coalition government – something observers say he may struggle to do.
The BBC’s Nick Thorpe in Sofia says more political uncertainty in the EU’s poorest country looks likely as the main parties struggle to re-establish their claim to power. As polls closed, crowds gathered outside the election centre at the Palace of Culture in Sofia to protest against any new attempt by Gerb to form a new government.
Protesters chanting “Mafia” were involved in brief scuffles with police, Bulgarian news agencies said. If the exit polls are correct, Gerb will fall well short of a majority in the 240-seat parliament.
In order to form a new government, it will need the support of parties that have already declared their opposition to another Borisov-led administration. Other parties expected to pass the 4% threshold needed to enter parliament are the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF) – which represents Bulgaria’s ethnic Turkish minority – and the ultra-nationalist Ataka.
The centrist Bulgaria of the Citizens, led by former European Commissioner Meglena Kuneva, was thought to be close to the necessary threshold.... Read the full, comprehensive news article and discuss at Kenya Broadcasting Corporation