Poland to dismantle disciplinary chamber of judges after dispute with EU

Poland to dismantle disciplinary chamber of judges after dispute with EU

The Polish government decides to dismantle a controversial disciplinary chamber for judges, after the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the disciplinary mechanism undermines EU law.
“Poland will continue reforms of the judicial system, also in the area of ​​judicial accountability, aimed at improving the efficiency of this system,” the government said in a statement on Tuesday, adding that the abolition of the chamber would be part of the process. redesign.

Warsaw’s long-running dispute over judicial reforms has escalated in recent months, with Brussels demanding that Poland implement an EU court ruling to dissolve the contested chamber of judges by August 16.

Poland could face financial sanctions if it does not comply with the EU decision.

Warsaw established the Disciplinary Chamber, a body of the country’s Supreme Court with the power to discipline judges, including those in lower courts, in 2017.

It is made up of judges chosen by the National Judicial Council, whose members are chosen by parliament, where the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party holds the majority.

Many Polish judges feared that the chamber was a tool to push them to make decisions favorable to the authorities.

The Polish nationalist government has already defended it, along with broader initiatives to reshape the justice system, saying it seeks to reform an inefficient and corrupt system.

Critics, however, saw this as a pretext for the government to take control of the courts.

Although Poland has indicated its intention to dismantle the chamber in the future, the government said in its response to the European Commission on Monday that it would submit a petition to revoke interim measures from the Court of Justice which could result in sanctions. financial if he did not suspend the room. operations in the meantime.

The leader of the PiS party said this month that Poland would dissolve the chamber and present plans for an alternative disciplinary system in September.

The European Commission said it has received Poland’s response and will now analyze it.

“We are examining the response before deciding on any further measures,” a Commission spokesperson said at a daily press conference.

Poland and the EU have been at daggers drawn for years over judicial reforms, and the bloc has pledged to take strong action against what it sees as a disregard for democratic standards.

Warsaw has already argued that it should be allowed to pass the judicial reforms it wants and has accused Brussels of an authoritarian approach that could divide the EU.


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