Leader of ruling Bulgarian Socialists calls for early general elections by end of July

The leader of Bulgaria's ruling Socialists is calling for the resignation of the coalition government and for early elections to be held by the end of next month.

Sergei Stanishev said Tuesday that his party cannot bear the responsibility for the government alone after last week's call for a snap poll by the junior partner in the ruling coalition — the MRF party.

The MRF party leader called for early parliamentary elections after the Socialists finished a distant second to the center-right GERB party in last month's European elections — exposing limited public support for the government.

The Socialist-MRF coalition is one year into a four-year term. It controls exactly half of the seats in the 240-member parliament, and relies on the tacit support of a nationalist party to govern.