Gorbachev’s Forum on Eastern Europe’s Future Opens in Sofia

Former Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, arrived Wednesday evening in Sofia for the conference “Europe Looks East”, which will bring together international politicians, intellectuals and civil representatives.

The two-day forum started on Thursday and is organized by “New Policy Forum”, an NGO founded by Gorbachev, and the Bulgarian “Slaviani Foundation” with President Zakhari Zakhariev.

Between 60 and 70 people have already confirmed their participation, including former PM of Spain Felipe Gonzalez, former Turkish PM Mesut Yilmaz, former Foreign Ministers of Germany, Hans-Dietrich Genscher, and Russia, Alexander Bessmertnih, the Serbian filmmaker Emir Kusturica, the Polish journalist Adam Michnik, the American journalists from the “International Herald Tribune” William Pfaff, and from the “Newsweek”, Owen Matthews, and the Russian oligarch Alexander Lebedev.

The participants in the conference will discuss topics from modern politics, like the Turkish EU membership and the politics in the Middle East regions.

“I have been trying for three years to bring Gorbachev’s forum to Bulgaria and in October it will be a fact,” Zakhariev said.

He also noted that the Speaker of the Bulgarian Parliament, Tsetska Tsacheva, has confirmed the National Assembly’s full support for the conference.

The Bulgarian PM Boyko Borisov is expected to open the forum and the Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov is also expected to take part in the discussions.

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