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“Dr. Zhelyu Zhelev” Foundation Organized an International Conference “Ten Years Later: Lessons for the Future”

The international conference “Ten years later: Lessons for the Future”, organized by “Dr. Zhelyu Zhelev” Foundation with the support of UNDP, the Delegation of the European Commission to Bulgaria, the Democratic Commission to the Embassy of the United States, USAID, and the Friedrich Nauman Foundation, was held on November 20 – 21,1999 at the Sheraton Hotel.

The meeting was attended by the former Presidents of Rumania – Ion Iliesku, and Moldova – Mircha Snegur, and friends of the democratic forces in Bulgaria like Adam Michnik, Richard Thomas, baroness Patricia Rollings, Iv Manvil, and others. Mr. Antonio Vigilante, UNDP Special Representative for post-conflict development in South Eastern Europe, and Mr. John Grant, Director of the U.S. Agency for International Development, addressed the conference. An address by President Peter Stoyanov was read as well.

During the presentations and the discussion were analyzed the common features in the process of democratization and political change, as well as the differences in the stages and models of transition from totalitarism to civil society, or at the expression of Adam Michnik – “the transition from the society of slaves to the society of free people”. The strategies, and the success and failure of the economic reform, as well as the humanitarian dimensions of the transition period, were also discussed. Dr. Zhivka Damianova, Program Manager of Coalition 2000, presented Corruption Indexes from Vitosha Research surveys on the status of corruption in Bulgaria.

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