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Statement of the Network of the Presidents of the Supreme Judicial Courts of the European Union on the Situation in Poland

2017-05-23

The Network of the Presidents of the Supreme Judicial Courts of the European Union is concerned in relation to reports of interferences by the Polish authorities with the Polish judiciary.


The Network of Presidents is an organisation comprising the Presidents of the Supreme Courts of the European Union. Its members meet to discuss matters of common interest and concern, exchange ideas and information, and it provides a forum through which European institutions may request the opinions of the Supreme Courts of the European Union.


Interventions by Polish authorities, including the calling into question the constitutionality of the appointment of the First President of the Supreme Court of Poland and the envisaged reform of the National Council of the Judiciary, appear to indicate a threat to the independence of the Supreme Court as well as the Polish judiciary as a whole.


Co-operation in the field of justice is largely based on mutual trust in the administration of justice within the European Union. The Network of Presidents therefore expresses its concern that the interferences by the Polish authorities will not only have the effect of undermining the rule of law, but also mutual trust in the administration of justice.


The Network of Presidents joins the statements of concern on the rule of law in Poland voiced by the European Commission and the Venice Commission and expresses solidarity with the Polish judiciary.