The Odrysian Kingdom was a state union of over 40 Thracian tribes and 22 kingdoms that existed between the 5th century BC and the 1st century AD. It consisted of present-day Bulgaria, spreading to parts of Southeastern Romania, parts of Northern Greece and parts of modern-day European Turkey, it is suggested. Instead, the kings may have moved between residences. A capital was the city of Odryssa. Another royal residence believed to have been constructed by Cotys I is in the village of Starosel, while in 315 BC Seuthopolis was built as a capital. An early capital was Vize; the kingdom broke up and Kabyle was a co-capital by the end of the 4th century BC. The Odrysians were one of the most powerful Thracian tribes that dwelled in the plain of the Hebrus river; this would place the tribe in the modern border area between Southeastern Bulgaria, Northeastern Greece and European Turkey, centered around the city of Edirne. The river Artescus passed through their land as well. Xenophon writes that the Odrysians held horse races and drank large amounts of wine after the burial of their dead warriors.
Thucydides writes on their custom, practised by most Thracians, of giving gifts for getting things done, refuted by Heraclides. Herodotus was the first writer to mention the Odrysae. Thrace had been part of the Persian empire since 516 BC during the rule of Darius the Great, was re-subjugated by Mardonius in 492 BC. During Persian rule, it made part of the Skudra satrapy. Parts were occupied by Scythians and Greek colonists earlier besides the numerous invasions; the Odrysian state was the first Thracian kingdom that acquired power in the region, by the unification of many Thracian tribes under a single ruler, King Teres in the 470s BC after the Persian defeat in Greece. During the reign of Teres or Sitalces the state was at its zenith and extended from the Black Sea to the east, Danube to the north, the region populated with the tribe called Triballi to the north-west, the basin of the river Strymon to the south-west and towards the Aegean - present-day Bulgaria, Romanian Dobruja, Turkish East Thrace and Greek Western Thrace between the Hebrus and the Strymon, except the Aegean and Black seas coasts occupied by Greek cities.
Sovereignty was never exercised over all of its lands. Historian Z. H. Archibald writes: The Odrysians created the first state entity which superseded the tribal system in the east Balkan peninsula, their kings were known to the outside world as kings of Thrace, although their power did not extend by any means to all Thracian tribes. Within the confines of their kingdom the nature of royal power remained fluid, its definition subject to the dictates of geography, social relationships, circumstance This large territory was populated with a number of Thracian and Daco-Moesian tribes that united under the reign of a common ruler, began to implement common internal and external policies; these were favorable conditions for overcoming the tribal divisions, which could lead to the formation of a more stable ethnic community. This was not realised and the period of power of the Odrysian kingdom was brief. Despite the attempts of the Odrysian kings to bolster their central power, the separatist tendencies were strong.
Odrysian military strength was based on intra-tribal elites making the kingdom prone to fragmentation. Some tribes were rioting and tried to separate, while others remained outside the borders of the kingdom. At the end of the 5th and the beginning of the 4th century BC, as a result of conflicts, the Odrysian kingdom split into three parts; the political and military decline continued, while Macedonia was rising as a dangerous and ambitious neighbour. According to the Greek historians Herodotus and Thucydides, a royal dynasty emerged from among the Odrysian tribe in Thrace around the end of the 5th century BC, which came to dominate much of the area and peoples between the Danube and the Aegean for the next century. Writers, royal coin issues, inscriptions indicate the survival of this dynasty into the early 1st century AD, although its overt political influence declined progressively first under Persian, Macedonian Roman, encroachment. Despite their demise, the period of Odrysian rule was of decisive importance for the future character of south-eastern Europe, under the Roman Empire and beyond.
Teres' son, proved to be a good military leader, forcing the tribes that defected the alliance to acknowledge his sovereignty. The rich state that spread from the Danube to the Aegean built roads to develop trade and built a powerful army. In 429 BC, Sitalces allied himself with the Athenians and organized a massive campaign against the Macedonians, with a vast army from independent Thracian and Paeonian tribes. According to Thucydides, it included as many as 150,000 men, but was obliged to retire through the failure of provisions, the coming winter. Greek as a lingua franca had been spoken at least by some members of the royal household in the fifth century and became the language of administrators. After the kingdom had split itself in three semi-independent kingdoms Philip II of Macedon invaded and conquered much of Thrace; some Odrysian kings and other Thracian tribes were submitted and paid taxes at times during different periods to Philip II, Alexander the Great and Philip V. Two of the three kingdoms were forced into vassal status by Philip II in 352 BC, while in 342-341 BC he conquered the Odrysian hear
Politics of Bulgaria
The politics of Bulgaria take place in a framework of a parliamentary representative democratic republic, whereby the Prime minister is the head of government, of a multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the government. Legislative power is vested in the National Assembly; the Judiciary is independent of the legislature. After 1989, after forty-five years of single party system, Bulgaria had an unstable party system, dominated by democratic parties and opposition to socialists - the Union of Democratic Forces and several personalistic parties and the post-communist Bulgarian Socialist Party or its creatures, which emerged for a short period of time in the past decade, personalistic parties could be seen as the governing Simeon II's NDSV party and Boyko Borisov's GERB party. Today, the president is Rumen Radev Bulgaria has good freedom of speech and human rights records as reported by the US Library of Congress Federal Research Division in 2006, while Freedom House listed it as "free" in 2011, giving it scores of 2 for political rights and 2 for civil liberties.
However, in 2014, there is some concern that the proposed new Penal Code would limit freedom of the press and assembly, as a consequence freedom of speech. The Economist Intelligence Unit has rated Bulgaria as "flawed democracy" in 2016. After the fall of the communism in 1989, the former communist party was restructured and succeeded by the Bulgarian Socialist Party, which won the first post-communist elections for the Constitutional Assembly in 1990 with a small majority. Meanwhile, Zhelyu Zhelev, a communist-era dissident from the new democratic party - Union of Democratic Forces, was elected President by the Assembly in 1990. In the first years after the change of regime, Bulgarian politics had to establish the foundations of a democratic society in the country after nearly fifty years of de facto totalitarian communism; the so-called period of transition began in the early 1990s. The politics of Bulgaria was aimed at joining the European Union and the NATO fold, as the alliances were recognised to have political agendas similar to the goals of the new Bulgarian democracy.
In contemporary Bulgaria, the government and its leader - the Prime Minister, have more political influence and significance than the President. Thus, the parliamentary elections set the short-term social and political environment in the country since the cabinet decides how the country is governed while the President can only make suggestions and impose vetoes. In the first parliamentary elections held under the new constitution of Bulgaria, in October 1991, the Union of Democratic Forces party won a plurality of the seats, having won 110 out of the 240 seats, created a cabinet alone with the support of the Movement for Rights and Freedoms — a liberal party, perceived as a party of the ethnic Turks minority in Bulgaria. Yet, their government collapsed in late 1992, was succeeded by a technocratic team put forward by the Bulgarian Socialist Party, which served until 1994 when it collapsed; the President dissolved the government and appointed a provisional one to serve until early parliamentary elections could be held in December.
BSP won convincingly these elections in December 1994 with a majority of 125 seats out of the 240. Due to the severe economic crisis in Bulgaria during their government, BSP's cabinet collapsed and in 1997 a caretaker cabinet was appointed by the President, again, to serve until early parliamentary elections could be held in April 1997; the April 1997 elections resulted in a landslide victory for the SDS, winning a majority of 137 seats in parliament, allowing them to form the next government. This proved to be the first post-communist government that did not collapse and served its full 4-year term until 2001. In 2001, the former monarch of Bulgaria Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha returned to power, this time as Prime Minister with his National Movement Simeon II, having won half of the seats, his party entered a coalition with the DPS and invited two functionaries of the BSP. In opposition were the two governing parties - the Socialist Party and the Union of Democratic Forces. In the four years in opposition the SDS suffered the defection of numerous splinter groups.
The ruling party NDSV itself ruptured into a pro-liberal fringe group. Bulgarian entered NATO in 2004. In the aftermath, the BSP won the parliamentary elections in 2005 with 82 out of the 240 seats, but as it didn't get the majority of the seats, a coalition government was formed by the three biggest parties - BSP, NDSV and DPS; the elections put in parliament some of the right-wing parties, as well as the extreme-right nationalist coalition led by the party Ataka as an answer to the former coalition government of NDSV with DPS. Bulgarian entered the European Union in 2007. In the parliamentary elections of 2009, the centre-right party of the mayor of Sofia, GERB, won with 117 seats; the party formed a minority government with the support of the right-wing parties. Once the governing party - the National Movement Simeon II did not amass enough votes to enter the parliament; the austerity measures required in the stagnation of the Global Financial Crisis led to massive protests and the resignation of the cabinet in early 2013, months before the end of GERB's term.
In the early elections the former leading party GERB received highest vote from the people. This was the first time since 1989 that a ruling party was re-elect
Kristalina Ivanova Georgieva-Kinova is a Bulgarian economic analyst serving as Chief Executive of the World Bank since 2017. She served as Acting President of the World Bank Group from 1 February 2019 to 8 April 2019, she served as Vice-President of the European Commission under Jean-Claude Juncker from 2014 to 2016. From 1993–2010, she served in a number of positions in the World Bank Group rising to become its vice president and corporate secretary in March 2008, she has served as a member of the board of trustees and associated professor in the Economics Department of the University of National and World Economy in Bulgaria. On 27 September 2016, the Bulgarian government nominated Kristalina Georgieva for the post of United Nations Secretary-General, her short run Secretary-General at the UN ended following a vote at the UN Security Council on 5 October, where Georgieva ranked number eight out of ten candidates. In the same vote, António Guterres got the support of the Security Council for the post of UN Secretary-General.
On 28 October, the World Bank announced that Georgieva would become the first CEO of the bank starting on 2 January 2017. Georgieva was named "European of the Year" in 2010 and "EU Commissioner of the Year" as an acknowledgment of her work, in particular, her handling of the humanitarian disasters in Haiti and Pakistan, she had been nominated among the candidates for the category "Commissioner of the Year", the prestigious award organized by the European Voice newspaper. Kristalina Georgieva holds a PhD in Economics and an MA in Political Economy and Sociology from the University of National and World Economy in Sofia, Bulgaria, her thesis was on "Environmental Protection Policy and Economic Growth in the USA". She did post-graduate research and studies in natural resource economics and environmental policy at the London School of Economics in the late 1980s and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, she has written over 100 academic papers and has authored a microeconomics textbook. She held a range of academic and consulting positions in Bulgaria and the US, has lectured on development topics in universities, including the Australian National University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Tsinghua University, Yale University, Harvard University, London School of Economics, the University of the South Pacific and others.
Georgieva is fluent in Bulgarian and Russian, can speak some French. Georgieva started her career at the World Bank Group in 1993 as an environmental economist for Europe and Central Asia. Following this, she served in various positions in the bank rising to become Director of the Environment Department in charge of World Bank's environmental strategy and lending. In this role she oversaw around 60% of lending operations of the World Bank Group. From 2004–2007 she was the institution's Director and Resident Representative in the Russian Federation, based in Moscow, she returned to Washington DC, to become director of Strategy and Operations, Sustainable Development. Her final position at the World Bank, vice president and corporate secretary, conveyed lead responsibility for liaison with the members of the institution's Board of Executive Directors, representing the Bank's shareholders. During that time, she worked on accompanying capital increase. In January 2010, Georgieva announced her intention to resign from this post in view of her nomination to the Commission of the European Union.
Nomination and confirmation After the former Bulgarian nominee, Rumiana Jeleva, came under fire during the confirmation hearing from members of the European Parliament over both her competence for the post and allegations of gaps in her declaration of financial interests, she withdrew her bid. The Bulgarian government proposed Kristalina Georgieva as their new candidate. On 21 January 2010 the European Commission President José Manuel Barroso met with Georgieva and expressed his approval, stating that "Mrs. Georgieva has solid international experience and knowledge with which she is going to contribute in her capacity as a EU Commissioner"; the confirmation hearing of Georgieva took place at the European Parliament on 4 February 2010. She faced questions on her suitability for the portfolio. Georgieva identified Haiti as a priority the need to provide shelter and health services and to restore the functions and service of the government, so as to start work on reconstruction and long-term development.
Other key issues raised in discussions with MEPs had been improving co-ordination within the EU, between humanitarian and military players in order to meet the dual challenge posed by expanding needs and shrinking budgets. The need to improve the effectiveness of EU actions and for better response capacity had been stressed, together with the establishment of European Voluntary Humanitarian Corps. Georgieva was given a warm response by MEPs, with Labour MEP Michael Cashman praising her "honesty and deep breadth of knowledge", she was applauded by committee members when she told British Conservative MEP Nirj Deva that she would stand up for the interests of the EU and be an independent mind. Ivo Vajgl, a Liberal MEP praised her, saying: "let me compliment you on your peaceful manner and the confidence you are exuding today", her performance at the hearing was publicized in Bulgaria and broadcast live on many national media, where it was seen as question of restoration of national honor following Jeleva's unsuccessful hearing.
The second college of the Barroso Commission, including Georgieva, was approved by the European Parliament on 9 February 2010
The history of Ottoman Bulgaria spans nearly 500 years, from the conquest by the Ottoman Empire of the smaller kingdoms emerging from the disintegrating Second Bulgarian Empire in the late 14th century, to the Liberation of Bulgaria in 1878. As a result of the Russo-Turkish War, the Principality of Bulgaria, a self-governing Ottoman vassal state, functionally independent, was created. In 1885 the autonomous province of Eastern Rumelia came under the control of the Bulgarian Tsar. Bulgaria declared independence in 1908; the Ottomans reorganised the Bulgarian territories, dividing them into several vilayets, each ruled by a Sanjakbey or Subasi accountable to the Beylerbey. Significant parts of the conquered land were parcelled out to the Sultan's followers, who held it as benefices or fiefs directly from him, or from the Beylerbeys; this category of land could not be sold or inherited, but reverted to the Sultan when the fiefholder died. The lands were organised as private possessions of the Sultan or Ottoman nobility, called "mülk", as an economic base for religious foundations, called vakιf, as well as other people.
Bulgarians paid multiple types of taxes, including a tithe, a capitation tax, a land tax, a levy on commerce, various irregularly collected taxes and corvees. The Ottomans did not require the Christians to become Muslims. There were many cases of individual or mass conversion in the Rhodopes. According to Thomas Walker Arnold Islam was not spread by force in the areas under the control of the Ottoman Sultan. A 17th-century author said: Meanwhile he wins by craft more than by force, snatches away Christ by fraud out of the hearts of men. For the Turk, it is true, at the present time. Non-Muslims did not serve in the Sultan's army; the exception to this were some groups of the population with specific statute used for auxiliary or rear services, the infamous blood tax known as devşirme, whereby every fifth young boy was taken to be trained as a warrior of the Empire. These boys went through harsh religious and military training that turned them into an elite corps subservient to the Sultan; these corps were an elite and loyal unit of the Ottoman army.
Recruits were gained through voluntarily accessions, as some parents were eager to have their children enroll in the Janissary service that ensured them a successful career and comfort. While the Ottomans were ascendant, there was overt opposition to their rule; the first revolt began at the time King Sigismund of Croatia and Hungary had established the chivalric Order of the Dragon, 1408, when two Bulgarian nobles and Fruzhin, liberated some regions for several years. The earliest evidence of continued local resistance dates from before 1450. Radik was recognised by the Ottomans as a voyvoda of the Sofia region in 1413, but he turned against them and is regarded as the first hayduk in Bulgarian history. More than a century two Tarnovo uprisings occurred - in 1598 and 1686 around the old capital Tarnovo; those were followed by the Catholic Chiprovtsi Uprising in 1688 and insurrection in Macedonia led by Karposh in 1689, both provoked by the Austrians as part of their long war with the Ottomans.
All of the uprisings were drowned in blood. Most of them resulted in massive waves of exiles numbering hundreds of thousands. In 1739 the Treaty of Belgrade between Austrian empire and the Ottoman Empire ended Austrian interest in the Balkans for a century, but by the 18th century the rising power of Russia was making. The Russians, as fellow Orthodox Slavs, could appeal to the Bulgarians in a way that the Austrians could not; the Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca of 1774 gave Russia the right to interfere in Ottoman affairs to protect the Sultan's Christian subjects. The Millet system was a set of confessional communities in the Ottoman Empire, it referred to the separate legal courts pertaining to "personal law" under which religious communities were allowed to rule themselves under their own system. The Sultan regarded the Ecumenical Patriarch of the Constantinople Patriarchate as the leader of the Orthodox Christian peoples of his empire. After the Ottoman Tanzimat reforms, Nationalism arose in the Empire and the term was used for protected religious minority groups, similar to the way other countries use the word nation.
New millets were created in 1870 for Uniate and Orthodox Bulgarian Christian communities. In this way a separate Bulgarian diocese was established, based on ethnic identity rather than principles of Orthodoxy and territory. Armed resistance to the Ottoman rule escalated in the third quarter of the 19th century and reached its climax with the April Uprising of 1876 that covered part of the ethnically Bulgarian territories of the empire; the uprising, along with the strategic interests of Russia on the Balkans, was a reason for the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878 that ended with the establishment of an independent Bulgarian state in 1878, albeit far smaller than what Bulgarians had hoped for and what was proposed in the Treaty of San Stefano of 1878. Bulgarian Exarchate Ottoman Vardar Macedonia Russo-Turkish War of 1877–1878 Treaty of San Stefano DEVŞİRME USULÜ - ACEMİ OĞLANLAR OCAĞI MÜESSESESİ - article about devshirme method "Dervisirme" in "Encyclopaedia of the Orient" website on the Ottoman Empire - or
2007 enlargement of the European Union
The 2007 enlargement of the European Union saw Bulgaria and Romania join the European Union on 1 January 2007. Together with the 2004 enlargement of the European Union, it is considered part of the fifth wave of enlargement of the European Union. Romania was the first country of post-communist Europe to have official relations with the European Community. In 1974, a treaty included Romania in the Community's Generalized System of Preferences. Since the Romanian Revolution of 1989, membership of the EC, its successor the European Union, has been the main goal of every Romanian Government and every political party in Romania. Romania signed its Europe Agreement in 1993, submitted its official application for membership in the EU on 22 June 1995 and Bulgaria submitted its official application for membership in the EU on 14 December 1995, the third and the fourth of the post–communist European countries to do so after Hungary and Poland. Along with its official EU application, Romania submitted the Snagov Declaration, signed by all fourteen major political parties declaring their full support for EU membership.
During the 2000s, Bulgaria and Romania implemented a number of reforms to prepare for EU accession, including the consolidation of its democratic systems, the institution of the rule of law, the acknowledgement of respect for human rights, the commitment to personal freedom of expression, the implementation of a functioning free-market economy. The objective of joining the EU has influenced Romania's regional relations; as a result and Romania have imposed visa regimes on a number of states, including Russia, Belarus, Montenegro and Moldova. Within the framework of integration meetings held between the EU member states and the EU candidate states Bulgaria and Romania, an'Association Committee' was held on 22 June 2004, it confirmed overall good progress for the preparation of accession. The findings were reflected in the 2004 Regular Report for Romania; the Brussels European Council of December 17, 2004 confirmed the conclusion of accession negotiations with Bulgaria and Romania. The 26 September 2006 of the European Commission confirmed the date once more announcing that Bulgaria and Romania would meet no direct restrictions, but progress in certain areas — reforms of the judicial system, elimination of corruption and the struggle against organized crime — would be monitored.
With this accession, Cyrillic became the third official alphabet of the EU, after the Latin and Greek alphabets. Cyrillic will be featured on the euro banknotes and the national side of the Bulgarian euro coins; the ECB and the EU Commission insisted that Bulgaria change the official name of the currency from ЕВРО to ЕУРО, claiming that the currency should have a standard spelling and pronunciation across the EU. For details, see Linguistic issues concerning the euro; the issue was decisively resolved in favour of Bulgaria at the 2007 EU Summit in Lisbon, allowing Bulgaria to use the Cyrillic spelling евро on all official EU documents. The date of accession, 1 January 2007, was set at the Thessaloniki Summit in 2003 and confirmed in Brussels on 18 June 2004. Bulgaria and the EU-25 signed the Treaty of Accession on 25 April 2005 at Luxembourg's Neumuenster Abbey; the 26 September 2006 monitoring report of the European Commission confirmed the entry date as 1 January 2007. The last instrument of ratification of the Treaty of Accession was deposited with the Italian government on 20 December 2006 thereby ensuring it came into force on 1 January 2007.
Some member states of the EU required Bulgarians and Romanians to acquire a permit to work, whilst members of all other old member states did not require one. In the Treaty of Accession 2005, there was a clause about a transition period so each old EU member state could impose such 2+3+2 transitional periods. Restrictions were planned to remain in place until 1 January 2014 – 7 years after their accession. Bulgaria and Romania became members on 1 January 2007, but some areas of cooperation in the European Union will apply to Bulgaria and Romania at a date; these are: Schengen Area Eurozone While both countries were admitted, concerns about corruption and organised crime were still high. As a result, although they joined, they were subject to monitoring from the European Commission through a Mechanism for Cooperation and Verification, it was set up for three years after the accession but has continued indefinitely and although it has highlighted the corruption and applied some pressure to continue reforms, it has not succeeded in forcing the two countries to complete reforms and corruption persists.
The accession treaty granted Romania a seat, like every other state, on the Commission. Bulgaria nominated Meglena Kuneva, from NDSV, given the post of Commissioner for Consumer Protection in the Barroso Commission, from 1 January 2007 until 31 October 2009, she was nominated in 2006 by the current Bulgarian Prime Minister Sergei Stanishev. Romania nominated Leonard Orban, an independent, made Commissioner for Multilingualism in the Barroso Commission, from 1 January 2007 until 31 October 2009, he was nominated in 2006 by the previous Romanian Prime Minister Călin Popescu-Tăriceanu. Both were approved by Parliament to become Commissioners upon accession. Upon accession Bulgaria's 18 and Romania's 35 observer MEPs became full voting