Bulgarian President Rumen Radev cruises to another five-year term

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Nov. 22 (UPI) — Bulgarian President Rumen Radev has won re-election in a runoff vote by taking about two-thirds of all ballots, keeping him in power for another five years.

Radev won 66% of the vote against candidate Anastas Gerdzhikov, who won 32%.

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The socialist-aligned Radev has run his campaign focused on anti-corruption following a protest last year against Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, who was forced out of power.

The election saw voter turnout of about 34%.

Radev has been a vocal critic of Borissov and appointed two consecutive caretaker governments that focused on corruption in Bulgaria’s industrial and financial sectors.

Though Radev ran as an independent, he’s aligned with the Continuing the Change Party, which aims to form a new government after finding coalition partners.

Radev has insisted on pragmatic ties with Russia and called for the European Union to restore talks with Moscow. He has also drawn concern for comments he made recently that said the Crimean Peninsula belongs to Russia.

Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 in a move that is still not officially recognized by the United States and other Western nations.

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