Mr Weber, where did the European values go?

DISCLAIMER: All opinions in this column reflect the views of the author(s), not of EURACTIV Media network.

Protest in front of the German embassy in Sofia. [BGNES]

Dear Mr. Weber, an ordinary Bulgarian citizen is writing to you, professing to believe in classic European values, as also upheld by the European People’s Party – EPP. My name is Momchil Daskalov. My son translated this text.

I strive to profess European values every day in my life, in my work, in my relationships with people and in the upbringing of my children. Human rights, freedom, dignity, the right to an opinion under the rule of law, constitute my faith. I’m not a communist, I’m not a leftist, I’m not a supporter of our president or your S&D opponents.

And I protest. Obviously against you as well.

I am writing to you on the occasion of your speech at the Debate on the Rule of Law in Bulgaria in the European Parliament and to ask you: what happened to the values of the EPP, your personal ones and where on your way as a politician did you get lost?

I apologize in advance for not using the delicate Brussels language, but I promise to be honest.

One of the best events in my life is the accession of Bulgaria to the EU and it is definitely the best thing that has happened to my country since 1885.

I am happy that one of my sons, as a free European citizen, is studying in The Hague, the Netherlands. At the same university as the boy who was beaten while handcuffed by a dozen uniformed police officers under the columns of the Council of Ministers in Sofia during the protests. Without doing anything wrong.

Have you watched the video? Of course not. There is no one to present it to you. And most likely if you had, you would not have said such nonsense in your speech before the Parliament last night that if people protest, therefore there is democracy in Bulgaria. Police violence is not a component of democracy, and the arrest and beating of journalists is not part of democracy. “Reporters Without Borders” reacted sharply to the case of Dimitar Kenarov, Bulgarian and international institutions were contacted. It is also noted by your colleague from the Council of Europe, Mrs Mijatović.

You focus on the violated human rights in Belarus, which is commendable, but the omission of identical principles of governance and action against the protests of ‘our government’ in Bulgaria as you stated during your speech is a sign of political hypocrisy.

Are you satisfied with the fact that Bulgaria is in 111th place in terms of media freedom according to “Reporters Without Borders“, because 80% of the most influential media, including the largest televisions are owned by a limited circle of businessmen close to the government and work outside all journalistic, ethical and moral standards, including public television. We have all seen how you understand freedom of speech by denying the floor to the only dissenting member of your party, the Bulgarian MEP Radan Kanev, who was forced to address Parliament in writing.

You called Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov pro-European.

In this regard, how would you comment on the fact that his (your) government is currently funding the rapid construction of the Turkish Stream project, which is of strategic importance to Russia and the Putin regime, but is unprofitable for Bulgaria, has been sharply criticized by the EU and is under threat of US sanctions?

Does it sound pro-European to you?

What do you think about SPIEGEL’s revelations about the extradition of Turkish citizens and their surrender to Erdogan’s regime, despite the decisions of the Bulgarian court? Apart from being “pro-European”, how do these actions correspond to the original values of the EPP?

And let’s get to the most painful topic, which has brought tens of thousands to the squares for almost three months. Corruption. A huge, all-consuming, degrading state structure. Starting with major European projects and reaching schools, hospitals, municipalities, police and control bodies at all levels.

You proclaim the success of the Bulgarian government in the fight against corruption in the most corrupt country in the EU.

It is clear from the Report that Bulgaria is the last among the countries of the Union in the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index and Brussels expects more serious results from the cases of corruption in the upper echelons of power.

It is no coincidence that according to an official survey, more than 65% of Bulgarians support the protests and demand the immediate resignation of the government and the chief prosecutor.

Does this government seem legitimate to you, even though it was supposedly elected legally?

You say that protests cannot bring down governments.

Mr. Weber, look around, please. You are in the European Parliament, the emanation of Western and pan-European democracy. How do you think it was built?

Against the background of increasing extreme left or extreme right centrifugal forces and growing Euroscepticism, especially in the new member states, aggressive and well-paid Russian influence, you demonstrated in a live broadcast how the EU should not function, how European values, those supposedly protected by the EPP are emptied of content.

Mr. Weber, for six votes more in your party, you have betrayed the Bulgarian citizens’ expectations and dreams of a new democracy, one that has been trying for thirty years to find its rightful place in Europe and to break free from the deadly Russian embrace.

You are defending a failed government and prime minister who have turned corruption into a method of governance and lies into a measure of behaviour.

Do you understand that whoever is supporting the Мafia is becoming a part of it?

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