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World News | EU Supreme Court rules Polish judicial reforms violate EU law


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BRUSSELS, June 5 (AP) The European Union stepped up its rule of law fight with member Poland on Monday when the bloc’s top court confirmed Warsaw’s refusal to abide by EU rules on judicial independence. A fine of one billion euros.

The European Court of Justice ruled on Monday that Poland’s 2019 judicial reforms violated EU law after the European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm, claimed Poland’s highest court lacked the necessary independence and impartiality.

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“Based on today’s judgment, the court upholds the committee’s action,” the court statement said.

It added that “the value of the rule of law is an integral part of the EU’s identity as a common legal order and is embodied in principles embodying obligations legally binding on member states.” It said Poland had failed to meet those obligations .

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The disagreement over the functioning of the Supreme Court is just one of many disputes between the right-wing government in Warsaw and EU institutions. It claims the EU is undermining Poland’s inalienable right to make independent decisions.

EU institutions insist that Poland under the populist Law and Justice party has been slipping away from the bloc’s principles of the rule of law.

The debate centers on the independence of Poland’s top court judges in reviewing EU law.

Just last week, top U.S. and European Union justice officials criticized Poland’s plans for another law that could prevent political opponents from holding public office without adequate legal recourse. The EU has threatened to take action if it becomes fully clear that such a law would undermine democratic standards.

The criticism doesn’t just come from the EU itself. Hundreds of thousands of people staged anti-government protests in the Polish capital on Sunday, with citizens coming from across the country to express their anger at officials they say erode democratic norms and spark criticism of the country’s emulation in Hungary and Turkey. Worried about the road to dictatorship.

Organizers estimated that 500,000 people took part in the march, which could be the largest in recent decades.

In an impasse centered on Monday’s ruling by a Luxembourg court, Polish authorities have already had to pay around 550 million euros in fines since the introduction of a daily fine of 1 million euros in October 2021.

Daily fines were halved in April.

After the collapse of the Soviet Empire, Poland joined many other Central and Eastern European countries in the European Union.

Because of their escape from authoritarian rule, they have long been expected to serve as role models for countries that can thrive as Western liberal democracies.

Critics now say Poland and Hungary are slipping again into one-party dictatorships. (Associated Press)

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from a Syndicated News feed, the content body may not have been modified or edited by LatestLY staff)


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