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Kaczyński announces aim to change Polish constitution

PR dla Zagranicy
Nick Hodge 02.05.2016 15:28
Chairman of the ruling Law and Justice party Jarosław Kaczyński made a lengthy address on Monday, stating that his party aims to change the Polish constitution.
Chairman of the Law and Justice Jarosław Kaczyński. Photo: PAP/Leszek SzymańskiChairman of the Law and Justice Jarosław Kaczyński. Photo: PAP/Leszek Szymański

Kaczyński gave the address at Poland's lower house of parliament, while many Poles were off work as part of the extended May weekend holiday: Monday is Flag Day and Tuesday Constitution Day.

He said that the constitution “needs to be verified every twenty years.

Next year sees twenty years since the adoption of the Constitution [following the end of the communist era].

Is this not a good time [to change it]?”

He likewise condemned top-level courts which have opposed reforms voted through parliament.

The Constitutional Tribunal rejected a raft of reforms on 9 March - the measures supported by Law and Justice changed how the court functioned.

Last week, Poland's Supreme Court adopted a resolution stating that the tribunal's rulings should be respected, even if not published by the prime minister (the latter factor makes the rulings binding).

We are going to settle this matter,” Kaczyński said, accusing the tribunal of “rejecting” a compromise.

We will not permit anarchy in Poland, even if it is promoted by the courts,” he said.

Poland's constitutional crisis has become international, with the European Commission carrying out a probe into the rule of law in Poland. On 11 March, human rights watchdog the Venice Commission urged the government to publish the rulings of the Constitutional Tribunal.


Meanwhile, Sławomir Neumann, of the centrist Civic Platform opposition party, said that there could be no discussion regarding amendments to the constitution until Law and Justice starts to respect the current one.

Likewise, MEP Kamila Gasiuk-Pihowicz of the Nowoczesna party accused Kaczyński of "Himalayas of hypocrisy". (nh)

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