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Poland’s ruling party proposes new law on tribunal amid row

PR dla Zagranicy
Paweł Kononczuk 03.06.2016 17:40
Poland’s ruling conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party has said it wants parliament to start work next week on a new law that would change the way the country’s Constitutional Tribunal works.
Photo: Flickr.com/Kancelaria Premiera Photo: Flickr.com/Kancelaria Premiera

The tribunal, which decides whether laws passed by parliament are in keeping with the Polish constitution, is at the centre of a bitter political row that has sparked anti-government protests.

The EU has criticized Warsaw for lack of progress in resolving a deadlock over the court.

Under a new bill proposed by PiS deputies, the tribunal would be required, as a rule, to pass verdicts with a simple majority. But on complicated issues adjudicated by a panel of at least 11 judges, verdicts in some cases would need a two-thirds majority of votes by judges.

The head of the centrist opposition Civic Platform caucus, Sławomir Neumann, said if parliament gives the green light to the new bill proposed by PiS, his party would file a complaint with the Constitutional Tribunal.

On Wednesday, the European Commission adopted an opinion on changes to the tribunal introduced by PiS after it came to power in October, saying these pose “a systemic risk to the rule of law” in Poland.

It was the first time that the EU executive has officially criticized an EU member state under its so-called rule-of-law procedure. (pk)

tags: politics
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