The President and Members of the National Assembly paid last respects to the first democratically elected President of the Republic of Bulgaria Zheliu Zhelev. Among the persons attending the mourning ceremony in the patriarchal cathedral “St. Alexander Nevski” were the President of the Republic of Bulgaria Rosen Plevneliev, the former presidents of Bulgaria Georgi Parvanov and Petar Stoyanov, Vice President Margarita Popova, Prime Minister Boyko Borisov, the Mayor of Sofia Yordanka Fandakova, the EU commissioner Kristalina Georgieva, cabinet members, the former premier Simeon Sakscoburgotha, the President of Albania – Bujar Nishani, of Kosovo – Atifete Jahjaga and of Macedonia - George Ivanov, as well as the Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Hercegovina – Mladen Ivanic, members of the European Parliament from Bulgaria, diplomats, politicians and citizens.
“Zheliu Zhelev left us – a President , whose work as statesman we will always link with the beginning of the democratic processes in Bulgaria” , wrote Tsetska Tsacheva, chair of the National Assembly, in her condolatory letter to the family and friends of the late president. In the letter she points out that president Zheliu Zhelev has always been an example for civic and intellectual dignity, never compromising with his loyalty to freedom and democracy. In her words his contribution to the democratic advancements and the European orientation of Bulgaria will always be remembered and respected in our society.