Former Bulgarian prime minister Boyko Borisov is urging his opponents to join him at the negotiating table, as the country looks to form a new election.
Borisov's centre-right party GERB took the biggest share of votes in Bulgaria's recent parliamentary election, and he now says that different political parties must now find common ground.
“What's the most important thing at the moment in Bulgaria? First of all, the most important for the world too, is who supports Putin and who is against him. Who is on the side of Ukraine and who isn't...This should be the first topic that elected parties state their positions about”, said Borisov.
Bulgaria also faces challenges from high inflation, rising energy costs, joining the euro zone and becoming part of the European visa-free Schengen area.
"Now is not the time for dominance"
Speaking to reporters at his party's headquarters, Borisov insisted that he does not want to be either prime minister, a cabinet minister or a member of parliament.
“Now is not the right time for dominance, but for seeking unity,” Borissov said, adding that some 80% of Bulgarians want to see a new government instead of another election.
He proposed allowing party experts to seek common ground between the potential coalition partners on the main foreign and domestic policy issues.
Borissov led three governments between 2009 and early 2021. His reputation eroded after allegations of corruption practices, links to oligarchs and suppression of media freedom, which sparked protests.
Despite a low voter turnout, GERB secured 25.4% of the vote, edging out their closest rival -- centrist anti-corruption party, We Continue the Change -- by just five percentage points. Five other parties also passed the support threshold needed to enter the National Assembly.