EU Triggers Article 7 Against Poland

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The European Union has taken the unprecedented step of triggering Article 7 of the European Treaty and moving towards sanctions against Poland in order to prevent authoritarianism taking hold in the member state.

“Despite repeated efforts, for almost two years, to engage the Polish authorities in a constructive dialogue in the context of the Rule of Law Framework, the Commission has today concluded that there is a clear risk of a serious breach of the rule of law in Poland,” the European Commission said in a statement.

“As guardians of the treaty, the Commission is under a strict responsibility to act … If the application of the rule of law is left completely to the individual member states, then the whole of the EU will suffer,” Frans Timmermans, the first vice-president of the European Commission, told reporters in Brussels, adding that the Commission was invoking the treaty clause “with a heavy heart.”

“I do not understand this decision,” said Andrzej Duda, Poland’s head of state. “It is clearly political and has nothing to do with merits,” the President said.

A few hours after the Commission’s decision, Mr Duda signed two controversial acts ‘reforming’ the country’s judicial system.

“The Commission’s announcement had no impact on my decision. I was only interested in the conditions I had made [in July] being fulfilled by parliament, and whether they had made any changes which I couldn’t approve,” the president said.

EU governments will now meet at the Council of the European Union to hear Poland out and ask it to address their concerns. But if 22 of the EU’s 28 countries and the European Parliament are not satisfied, the process will move on to the next stages, which may mean sanctions. Poland might be deprived of the right to vote and could suffer financial consequences. In the current EU budget, the country is the largest beneficiary of EU structural funds — 82.5 billion euros.

Konrad Szymański, the secretary of state for European Affairs, said that Article 7 is not a sanction-triggering procedure.

“It boils down to the European Council’s confirmation that some of the European Union’s values have been contravened. Public opinion is looking closely at the matter and I am positive that this situation is creating an unprecedented distrust in Poland for the integration process. Law and Justice is a part of the pro-European majority in Poland. This issue should become a concern of each and every European — in Warsaw and in Brussels correspondingly,” Minister Szymański told Onet.

He added that Hungary does not share the conviction that Poland’s reforms should be a matter that is tackled through a sanction procedure. “And this is not the only country that has distanced itself from the plans of the European Council,” Mr Szymański said.

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bucharest stock exchange

Serbia Drafts New Competition Law

serbia belgrade flag

Mayor: Armenia And Its Capital Yerevan Offer Safe Investment And Tourism To a Growing World

Do Your Homework First and Starting Business in Poland is Easier

Ukraine Is Offering Europe Unique Combat and Technological Experience

ICT Growth Continues to Boost Bosnian Economy

ict, it

Romania Cuts Income Tax, Introduces Solidarity Tax

CLUJ NAPOKA ROMANIA - OCT 2 2016: People on the central street of Cluj Napoka - the unofficial capital of Transylvania.

Bulgaria’s Bitcoin Mystery

bitcoin bulgaria

Estcoin: Estonia’s Own Digital Currency?

1 euro coin money (EUR) currency of European Union Estonia over blue background

Merkel: Albania is taking big steps forward

Emerging Europe’s Economies Are Booming

Moody’s: CEE Creditworthiness Holding Up

Man's hand holding pen and checking spreadsheet

Lithuania Handed Top Marks for Business Services

Beautiful panorama of Vilnius Old Town taken from Gediminas hill; Lithuania

Romanian Inflation Hits Four-Year High

supermarket, prices, inflation

Ametek opened a new factory in Subotica

New Start-Up and Innovation Report Names Estonia and Slovenia as Market Leaders

Tallin, Estonia - July 06,2017: Scenic view of the modern part of the city of Tallin, Estonia

Mobilising Private Sector Investment in Belarus, Moldova & Ukraine

IFC

The Slovak Matchmaking Fair open for registration

Romanian Cyber Security Firm Valued at 600 million US dollars in Private Equity Swoop

cyber security

Belarus Refinery Boss Upbeat Despite Challenges

oil refinery

Estonia — Easy Doing Business Destination seminar in the UK

Steep Jump in Georgian Exports

container ship in import export and business logistic.By crane Trade Port Shipping.cargo to harbor.Aerial view.Top view.

Romanian Car Maker Dacia Sees Sales Boom

Sables d Olonne France - May 07 2017 : Dacia Tour 2017 is a commercial operation organized by the car builder in order to present its cars throughout France - Close-up on cars

Lithuania Gives Innovation a StartUp

MILAN ITALY - MAY 2: People visit Lithuania pavilion at Expo universal exposition on the theme of food on MAY 2 2015 in Milan.

Belarus-Turkey Investment Forum to increase investment and trade between the two countries

Despite Public Anxieties, Migration is Playing a Key Role in ECA Growth

Bratislava city aerial panoramic view. Bratislava is the capital of Slovakia.

Kraków: Officially Emerging Europe’s Most Elegant City

Krakow. Image of Krakow Market square, Poland during sunrise.

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