Revolutions of 1989: Bulgaria - Parliament, Petar Mladenov (00:00:08)
Original video: Revolutions of 1989: East Germany - the police beating demonstrators (00:00:09)

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Revolutions of 1989: Bulgaria - Parliament, Petar Mladenov

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Bulgaria, Sofia, 1989


Revolutions in Eastern Europe, 1989 Petar Toshev Mladenov (Bulgarian: Петър Тошев Младенов) (22 August 1936 – 31 May 2000) was a Bulgarian communist diplomat and politician. He was the last Communist leader of Bulgaria from 1989 to 1990, and briefly the first president of democratic Bulgaria in 1990. Mladenov was born to a peasant family in the village of Toshevtsi, Vidin Province. His father was an anti-fascist partisan killed in action in 1944. He graduated from a military school, entered Sofia State University, and graduated from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations in 1963. He served as foreign minister for nearly two decades under the communist dictator Todor Zhivkov. Mladenov joined the Politburo and became foreign minister in 1971, serving in that position until November 1989, when he participated in a successful effort within the Politburo to overthrow Zhivkov. Mladenov then took over both of Zhivkov's main positions, becoming general secretary of the Bulgarian Communist Party and chairman of the state council (head of state). Having seen the overthrow of the other Eastern European communist governments, Mladenov helped to reorganise the government. Both of his positions were abolished early in 1990, but Mladenov became President of Bulgaria in April 1990. His government helped unemployed workers by starting a labour exchange. Mladenov resigned as president in July 1990 after an alleged accusation that he had suggested the use of tanks against an anti-government demonstration in December 1989, securing a place in history with the phrase 'Better the tanks come' (Bulgarian: По-добре танковете да дойдат). Although these allegations damaged his reputation as a liberal, reformist socialist, he is still notable for his role in Bulgaria's movement away from communism. Mladenov underwent a heart bypass in Houston in 1986, leaving him in frail health in the ensuing years. He died on 31 May 2000, survived by his wife Galya and his daughter.




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Original video: Revolutions of 1989: East Germany - the police beating demonstrators
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27-07-2010 01:36:19

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