Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha, Bulgaria’s former Prime Minister and ex king celebrates his 80th birthday on 16th of June. Thanksgiving service was held in St. Alexander Nevski Cathedral in Sofia...

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Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha, Bulgaria’s former Prime Minister and ex king celebrates his 80th birthday on 16th of June. Thanksgiving service was held in St. Alexander Nevski Cathedral in Sofia. Later in Vrana Palace, Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha will welcome guests from all corners of Europe, members of Royal families, Bulgarian statesmen and politicians.

The church service was attended by nearly all members of his family, including his wife Margarita, his sister Maria-Luisa, and members of the royal families of Spain, Romania, Serbia, Albania, were present.

The thankgiving service was led by His Holiness Patriarch Neophyte in a ministry of Metropolitans of the Holy Synod. After the prayer Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha was greeted by citizens.

BNT congratulated Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha on his birthday. He said he wished every success and the best to Bulgaria.

Members of the former parliamentary group of the Bulgarian National Movement Simeon II, to which Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha was a leader, and ministers from his government which was in office from 2001 – 2005, will also join the celebrations.

All his children and grandchildren came to Bulgaria to celebrate with him the happy occasion.

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Simeon II was born with the title Prince Simeon Tarnovski in 1937 in Sofia. He is the son of King Boris III and Queen Giovanna Savoy of Italy.

After the death of Boris III, he succeeded the throne, when he was a child, 6 years old. He could not rule, so regents were appointed. After the communist coup d'etat on 9th of September, 1944, Simeon was left to be king, but all his regents were executed. Two years later, on 16th of September, 1946, the monarchy was voted out of existence, and Simeon, his mother, Queen Giovanna and his sister Princess Maria Luisa went into exile.

Simeon eventually settled in Madrid, marrying a Spanish heiress. On 21st of January 1962, he married Margarita Gómez-Acebo y Cejuela. The couple have had five children – four sons (Kardam, Kiril, Kubrat and Konstantin) and a daughter, Kalina at the Orcheval Church in Veve, Switzerland. They have four sons, one daughter and 11 grandchildren, the latter, the first-born son of Kalina, born in Bulgaria.

In May 1996, he came back to Bulgaria for the first time after nearly 50 years of exile. Most of the royal property was later returned to him.

After his return, he joined the political life in the country. In 2001 Simeon announced ther formation of a national movement, carrying his name that would work for new ethics in politics. His Simeon II National Movement was registered as a party and he took part in the parliamentary elections on 7th of June, 2001. After a smashing victory, he became the new Prime Minister of Bulgaria.

Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha was Prime Minister of Bulgaria from 2001 to 2005.

Upon taking office, Simeon took as his surname Saxecoburggotski, the Bulgarian form of the name of his royal house, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.

On 21st of January 1962, Simeon married a Spanish wealthy heiress, Margarita Gómez-Acebo y Cejuela. The couple have had five children – four sons (Kardam, Kiril, Kubrat and Konstantin) and a daughter, Kalina at the Orcheval Church in Veve, Switzerland. They have four sons, one daughter and 11 grandchildren, the latter, the first-born son of Kalina, born in Bulgaria.