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Council of Europe steps in over Poland's judicial crisis

PR dla Zagranicy
Nick Hodge 04.12.2015 18:33
Secretary General of the Council of Europe Thorbjorn Jagland has offered help in solving a dispute over the appointment of judges to Poland's Constitutional Tribunal.
Photo: GlowimagesPhoto: Glowimages

On Thursday, the tribunal ruled that the appointment of two out of five judges by Poland's erstwhile centrist coalition government in the lead up to the 25 October general election was not constitutionally viable, as their election was premature.

However, the replacement of all five, as spearheaded by the newly elected Law and Justice party (four new judges have already been sworn in by President Andrzej Duda, himself formerly of Law and Justice), has likewise been slammed by the opposition and members of Poland's academic community as being unconstitutional.

Secretary General of the Council of Europe Thorbjorn Jagland indicated in a statement that the dismissal of the apparently unjustly removed three judges should be reversed.

I welcome yesterday’s decision by the Constitutional Tribunal of Poland which clarifies the legal and constitutional situation,” he said.

This decision now has to be fully implemented in all its aspects.

If there are any doubts about the correct implementation of the decision by the Constitutional Tribunal, the Polish authorities could address the Council of Europe Venice Commission.” (nh/rk)

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