Poland says EU Commission recommendations on court ‘premature’
PR dla Zagranicy
The European Commission on Wednesday urged Poland to respect rulings by the country's Constitutional Tribunal, issuing a set of recommendations and giving Warsaw three months to comply.
Photo: Flickr.com/Kancelaria Premiera
In a quick response, the Polish foreign ministry said the commission’s move was “very premature” and puts the commission "at risk of losing its authority."
The commission’s recommendations mark the second stage of a "rule-of-law" probe launched into Poland in January. The process could in theory eventually lead to the EU imposing penalties on Warsaw, but any such move would have to be backed unanimously by EU member states.
The commission said on Wednesday it believes that there is “a systemic threat to the rule of law in Poland.”
It called on the Polish government to publish the Constitutional Tribunal’s December judgments on the nomination of judges, alongside a March ruling, when the court said changes pushed through at the end of last year by the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party prevented the tribunal from working “reliably and efficiently.”
The Polish foreign ministry said on Wednesday that the commission’s decision "raises questions about the EC’s adherence to the principle of sincere cooperation with the governments of the [EU] member states."
European Commission deputy chief Frans Timmermans said on Wednesday: "Despite the dialogue pursued with the Polish authorities since the beginning of the year, the Commission considers the main issues which threaten the rule of law in Poland have not been resolved. We are therefore now making concrete recommendations to the Polish authorities.”
The Polish foreign ministry said in its statement that the purpose of country’s new bill on the Constitutional Tribunal "now in the final stages of the legislative process, is to introduce numerous systemic measures that are fully consistent with the European standards relating to the functioning of constitutional judiciary, as well as a number of Venice Commission recommendations."
The foreign ministry added that the Polish authorities were "determined to restore stable foundations on which the Constitutional Tribunal functions."
Poland has been locked in a political stalemate after Law and Justice, which came to power in October, introduced sweeping reforms to the Constitutional Tribunal and other institutions, prompting anti-government protests and criticism from abroad. (pk/aba)
Source: PAP, IAR