The European Commission Vice President for Values and Transparency Vera Jourova is meeting senior Polish political and judicial officials on Tuesday in order to discuss the country’s judicial reforms and the rule of law.
Jourova is scheduled to meet the speakers of both chambers of parliament, a deputy justice minister, the human rights ombudsman as well as the head of the Supreme Court.
“My main objective is to meet and discuss with our partners the rule of law issues, but also other aspects of my work such as disinformation or foreign interference, among others,’’ Jourova said.
“It is crucial to have a conversation, also about issues on which we differ,’’ she said.
At issue are judicial reforms that have been introduced since 2015 by Poland’s governing socially conservative Law and Justice party (PiS).
The reforms have put Poland’s governments at loggerheads with Brussels.
Most recently, Poland adopted a controversial law that that would broaden the disciplinary liability of judges.
The disciplinary regime currently in place, also introduced by PiS, is already under scrutiny by Brussels, which asked the top EU court to suspend parts of it.
The situation in the judiciary in Poland has been exacerbated recently, with regular judges and the Supreme Court trying to combat the PiS reforms.
In a ruling in January, the Supreme Court effectively declared that judges recommended for appointment by the National Judiciary Council (NCJ) under a PiS-reformed regime have no right to adjudicate, a move the Justice Ministry views as illegal. (dpa/NAN)