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Bulgarian authorities dismiss chief prosecutor amid anger over failure to tackle corruption

SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — Bulgarian President Rumen Radev has dismissed the country’s chief prosecutor amid public anger over his failure to tackle high-level corruption, the presidential press office said Friday.

Radev signed a decree to remove Ivan Geshev from his post after the Supreme Judicial Council earlier this week voted to oust him for “undermining the prestige of the judiciary.” The decision referred to his remark during a news conference demanding the removal of “political trash” from Parliament.

Geshev, 52, who was halfway into his seven-year term, had sweeping powers to oversee the work of all prosecutors. But since his appointment, he has faced protests by people accusing him of shielding corrupt politicians and businessmen instead of bringing them to justice.

His appointment in 2019, when he was the sole candidate for the job, was believed to be the result of political backing by the then ruling GERB party. His dismissal now comes after a deal between GERB and its main political rival, the reformist We Continue the Change party, who fiercely opposed Geshev’s actions.

Geshev becomes the first prosecutor-general in Bulgaria’s post-communist history to be formally dismissed from the influential post, in a move seen by some analysts as a success for civil society.

The Associated Press

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