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Russian-Friendly Presidential Win Ousts Bulgaria Government

  • Premier resigns, calls for snap vote after opposition victory
  • Snap parliamentary ballot can be held March 2017 earliest
Rumen Radev.

Rumen Radev.

Photographer: Nikolay Doychinov/AFP via Getty Images
Updated on

A Russian-friendly former Air Force chief won Bulgaria’s presidential ballot, torpedoing the European Union country’s government and adding to gains by anti-establishment political forces around the globe. 

Rumen Radev, a 53-year-old political novice, won 59 percent in Sunday’s runoff, the electoral commission said Monday. A MiG fighter pilot running on the opposition Socialists’ ticket, Radev defeated ruling-party candidate Tsetska Tsacheva, who won 36 percent. Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, leader of the Gerb party, tendered his government’s resignation, following through on his vow to quit and push for early elections if his side lost.