Brussels running short on patience with Sofia

Published on 5 November 2012 at 13:54


“A change of tone” leadsKapital, describing the recent deterioration in relations between Brussels and Bulgaria. The Sofia economic weekly writes that “three serious warnings” were sent within the space of just a few days to Bulgarian authorities – evidence, says the newspaper, that “the Bulgarian problems have not been forgotten and that the pressure to solve them will only increase.”

Early in October the European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes sent a letter to Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov inquiring into the lack of press freedoms. “I ask you to take appropriate measures […] to allow Bulgarian citizens to benefit from the pluralistic and independent press they are entitled to,” she wrote. A few days later, it was the German ambassador in Sofia’s turn to “confront the harsh reality of the Bulgarian media,” writes Kapital, describing the protests of the diplomat after an interview with him was censored in a major newspaper of the capital. And finally, the newspaper reports that Brussels openly criticised the Bulgarian Parliament’s appointment last week of new members of the Constitutional Court, raising questions about the “integrity and professionalism” of some of the latter. The only good news, says the paper —

… is that Brussels is keeping up the pressure. What would be even better is that it would produce some results right now.

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