The government of Bulgarian Prime Minister Boiko Borisov has resigned. The announcement follows nationwide protests against austerity measures and high electricity prices.
Borisov announced that the entire government would be stepping down on Wednesday, citing protests that had turned violent the previous day as the reason.
"After the last Cabinet meeting today, I will submit the resignation of my government," Borisov told parliament. "I will not participate in a government under which police are beating people," he said.
"We have dignity and honor," he said. "It is the people who put us in power and we give it back to them today."
The Bulgarian prime minister's statement came after demonstrators were injured in clashes with police late on Tuesday in the capital city, Sofia. At least eight of the protesters were injured, according to the emergency hospital Pirogov.
The protests, which also took place in at least five other cities, come amid mounting unhappiness over high energy costs and low living standards in the European Union's poorest country.
Tens of thousands took to the streets of Sofia on Sunday, prompting Borisov to announce the sacking of Finance Minister Simeon Djankov, a leading advocate of the austerity measures, in a Cabinet reshuffle.
Borisov's center-right government took office in July 2009. A new general election was scheduled for July. The vote could now take place by the end of April.
rc/kms (AFP, AP, dpa Reuters)