EC vice president to visit Poland in May?
PR dla Zagranicy
The vice president of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans, may decide to visit Poland in May, although such a visit has not been confirmed yet, Polish Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski has said.
Frans Timmermans (L) presided over a January 2016 debate in the European Parliament over the state of rule of law in Poland with Polish PM Beata Szydło (R) in attendence. Photo: Twitter.com/Frans Timmermans
“Diplomatic invitations are usually sent weeks in advance. For several weeks, we have not received confirmation that Mr Timmermans has expressed willingness to visit Poland. Everything which we have heard was merely press speculation,” Waszczykowski said on Tuesday.
“My staff are in constant contact with Mr Timmermans's office, which has not yet confirmed the visit."
He added that Timmermans was invited in April, during the EC's vice president's visit to Poland. “We look forward to further developments,” Waszczykowski said.
On 11 March, human rights watchdog the Venice Commission, an arm of the Council of Europe, urged Poland's ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) to respect a ruling of the Constitutional Tribunal.
The Tribunal on 9 March rejected a series of controversial changes to the way it functions introduced by Law and Justice.
Critics say the changes were designed to paralyse the Tribunal, amid PiS fears that the court would block key reforms pledged by the party in the run-up to its landslide election victory in October.
The court's ruling is only binding if officially published by Prime Minister Beata Szydło, which she has refused to do, claiming its decision is invalid. The first cross-party talks on the matter were held in Poland on 31 March. Opposition MPs voiced mixed opinions following the session. (rg/pk)