Stefan Yanev


Stefan Dinchev Yanev (Bulgarian: Стефан Динчев Янев) is a retired Bulgarian Army Brigade general. He was from 12 May to 13 December 2021 acting deputy prime minister, acting minister of defense and caretaker government Prime Minister of Bulgaria.[1][2][3]

Stefan Yanev
Стефан Янев
Stefan Yanev.jpg
Prime Minister of Bulgaria
In office
12 May 2021 – 13 December 2021
PresidentRumen Radev
Preceded byBoyko Borisov
Succeeded byKiril Petkov
Minister of Defence
In office
27 January 2017 – 4 May 2017
Prime MinisterOgnyan Gerdzhikov
Preceded byNikolay Nenchev
Succeeded byKrasimir Karakachanov
Personal details
Born (1960-03-01) 1 March 1960 (age 62)
Popovitsa, Plovdiv, Bulgaria
Political partyBulgarian Rise
Military service
Allegiance Bulgaria
Branch/serviceBulgarian People's Army (until 1989)
Bulgarian Land Forces (1989-2014)
Years of service1979–2014
RankBrigadier general
CommandsArtillery division

Early lifeEdit

He was born on 1 March 1960 in the Popovitsa, Plovdiv Province. In 1979, he graduated from the Technical High School of Electrical Engineering in Plovdiv. Yanev graduated from the artillery military school in Shumen (now a faculty of the Vasil Levski National Military University) and began building a career in the army in 1983, when he was appointed commander of an artillery platoon in Asenovgrad.[4]

Military careerEdit

Yanev was a commander of rocket artillery division in the 4th Army Artillery Regiment in Asenovgrad (1993-1996).

Between 1996 and 1998 he was a senior expert in the International Cooperation Department of the Ministry of Defense. He worked as an analysis officer at the PfP Coordination Group's Planning and Programming Department in Belgium (1998-2000). From 2000 to 2001 he was a senior assistant chief in the Strategic Planning Department of the General Staff of the Bulgarian Army.

Between 2001 and 2002 he was a state expert in the Euro-Atlantic Integration Directorate in the Ministry of Defense.[5] Until 2004 he was head of a department in the Euro-Atlantic Integration Directorate in the Ministry of Defense.

Yanev graduated from the National Defense University in Washington.

From 2005 to 2007, he was Head of the Transformation Department at the NATO Counter-Terrorism Center in Ankara.

From 2007-2010, he was the Director of the Defense Policy Directorate at the Ministry of Defense.

On 1 July 2009, he was appointed Director of the Security and Defense Policy Directorate and awarded the rank of Brigadier General.

On 3 May 2010 he was appointed Director of the Defense Policy Directorate, effective as of 25 May On 24 February 2011 he was relieved of his post, serving later as the military attaché to the United States.[citation needed]

On 2 May 2014, he became the head of the Vasil Levski National Military University. He was relieved on the ninth of the following month, as well as dismissed from military service, as of 9 June 2014.

Political career (2017-present)Edit

From 27 January to 4 May 2017 he was Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense of the Republic of Bulgaria in the caretaker government of Ognyan Gerdzhikov, and subsequently Secretary of Security and Defense of President Rumen Radev.

Prime Minister (2021)Edit

He was appointed to the post of Prime Minister of Bulgaria by President Rumen Radev on 12 May 2021, succeeding Boyko Borisov. He was succeeded by Kiril Petkov on 13 December 2021.

Defence Minister (2022)Edit

Yanev was dismissed from his post as Minister of Defense by Petkov, because the latter had introduced a political taboo on the use of Russian narratives, including the "special operation" label favoured by Vladimir Putin to refer to the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine. Yanev, who declared following Putin that it is not "war" in Ukraine but a "military operation", was dismissed on 1 March, a week after the start of the invasion.[6]

Military ranksEdit

  • Lieutenant (1983)
  • Senior Lieutenant (1985)
  • Captain (1989)
  • Major (1994)
  • Lieutenant Colonel (1999)
  • Colonel (2004)
  • Brigadier General (2009)


  1. ^ "Who Is Stefan Yanev - New Bulgarian Caretaker Prime Minister?". 11 May 2021.
  2. ^ "Bułgaria: Prezydent: przywrócenie zaufania do instytucji państwa najważniejszym zadaniem rządu - rynki zagraniczne". (in Polish). Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  3. ^ "Bulgarian President Radev names Stefan Yanev caretaker PM". The Sofia Globe. 2021-05-11. Retrieved 2021-05-13.
  4. ^ (PDF) {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  5. ^ Андон Дончев, Генералите от ракетните войски и артилерия на сухопътните войски на България, Изд. Авангард Прима, 2018, ISBN 9786192391089, с. 326.
  6. ^ GERASYMCHUK, SERGIY (7 May 2022). "Bulgaria: Hard Choice between Weapons for Ukraine and Unity of the Coalition". European Pravda. European Union and the International Renaissance Foundation.
Political offices
Preceded by Minister of Defence
Succeeded by
Preceded by Prime Minister of Bulgaria
Succeeded by