Opposition centre-right party GERB, a member of the Group of the European People's Party (EPP), won a clear victory in the elections for European Parliament (EP) in Bulgaria, garnering 31.13% of the votes, preliminary official data indicated on Monday.
Based on 75% of the ballots counted, the Socialists' Coalition for Bulgaria, a member of the Party of European Socialists, came in second with 18.85% voter support, followed closely by the ethnic Turks' Movement for Rights and Freedoms, a member of the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, with 16.41% backing, the country's Central Election Commission (CEC) said.
According to the preliminary results, two more political formations crossed the 5.88% threshold for EP entry - Bulgaria without Censorship (BwC) and the Reformist Bloc, a coalition of rightist parties led by former EU Commissioner Meglena Kuneva.
Voter turnout stood at 27.97% by 1700 p.m. (1600 p.m. CET), two hours before polls closed, according to CEC data.
Bulgaria will have 17 representatives in the 751-seat legislature.