Union of the Democratic Forces
(Sayuz na demokratichnite sili, SDS)
Historical notes: Founded in Dec. 1989 as a political coalition, initially by 11 parties and organizations which later grow in number - new ones are accepted and old ones were expelled or left. In Feb. 1997 UDF was transformed into single party.
UDF participated independently in the parliamentary elections in 1990, 1991, and 1994. In the presidential elections of Jan. 1992, UDF nominated the candidate team Mr Zhelyu Zhelev and Mrs Blaga Dimitrova. In the local elections in 1995, UDF participated independently or in coalition with other political parties as People's Union, Movement for Rights and Freedoms, Bulgarian Social Democratic Party etc. In June 1996, the UDF candidate for president Mr Petar Stoyanov won the primary election against Mr Zhelev, and in the presidential elections of Oct.-Nov. 1996, the same candidate was nominated by the coalition United Democratic Forces, which included: UDF, People's Union, and MRF. In March 1997 a new coalition agreement between UDF and People's Union was signed to register the coalition United Democratic Forces for the parliamentary elections scheduled April 19, 1997.
In the 7th Grand National Assembly, each of the parties and organizations members of UDF registered their own parliamentary group, and all together they formed the Parliamentary UDF. As a result of splitting in the Parliamentary UDF, part of the MPs registered in 1991 the Parliamentary Group of UDF. In the 36th and 37th National Assemblies UDF registered the Parliamentary Group of UDF.
UDF participated in the government of the country in the time of the cabinet of Dimitar Popov Dec. 1990 - Nov. 1991, and formed its own cabinet with Prime Minister Filip Dimitrov in the period Nov. 1991-Dec.1992.
In 1991, the first splitting among the coalition partners took place in connection with approval of the new constitution. Just before the parliamentary elections of Oct. 13, 1991, BANU "Nikola Petkov" also left UDF. The second splitting in UDF came after the vote of non-confidence in the cabinet of F. Dimitrov at the end of 1992. At the beginning of 1993, the Alternative Socialist Liberal Party was expelled, and a group of MPs left the Parliamentary Group of UDF. In Oct. 1994, the Democratic Party left also the coalition. Since the 7th National Conference of UDF held in Apr. 1995, individual membership was allowed in the coalition. The 8th National Conference (Feb. 14-15, 1997) marked the end of the coalition period and decided to register UDF as a single party. According to the new statute the former coalition parties and organizations became associated partners.
At the end of 1995, UDF had about 35 000 members.
Governing bodies of UDF are National Conference and National Executive Council.
Coalition colour - blue. UDF publishes the "Democratsiya" daily.
Address: Sofia 1000, 134 Rakovski Str.; phones +3592-882501; 657-093
NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COUNCIL of UDF
(elected on Feb.15, 1997, for a two-year mandate)
Ivan Kostov - chair of UDF
Hristo Biserov - secretary general of the UDF
Parties and organizations, associated partners in the UDF
Bulgarian Democratic Forum (chair Dyanko Markov)
Agrarian Democratic Union (chair Vladislav Kostov)
Movement "Civil Initiative"-SDS (chairs Z. Krastev, L. Nikolova, S. Ikonomov)
Conservative and Ecological Party (chair Svetlana Dyankova)
National Club for Democracy (chair Svetoslav Luchnikov)
National Movement "Ecoglasnost" (chair Ivan Sungarski)
New Social Democratic Party (chair Vasil Mihaylov)
United Christian Democratic Center (chair Ekaterina Mihaylova)
Radical Democratic Party (chair Aleksandar Yordanov)
Republican Party (chair Lenko Rusanov)
Social Democratic Party (chair Ivan Kurtev)
Union of the Repressed after Sept. 9, 1944 (chair Ivan Stanchev)
Federation of Independent Student Societies (chair Plamen Panayotov)
Christian Democratic Union (chair Asen Agov)
Democratic Party-1896 (chair Stoyan Raychevski)