Polish PM seeks dialogue with EU over Article 7: official

Source: Xinhua| 2018-01-06 00:46:03|Editor: Zhou Xin
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WARSAW, Jan. 5 (Xinhua) -- Michal Dworczyk, an aide to Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, said there were no signs that the European Union would implement disciplinary measures against Poland, known as Article 7, and that the Morawiecki government sought dialogue.

Quoted in the Friday issue of the Polish newspaper Rzeczpospolita daily, Dworczyk said the government sought to clarify Poland's judicial reforms.

"Our task is to clarify to European politicians what the judicial reforms in Poland are about. We will call on the experience of our neighbours... Today we are only solving these outstanding issues. We are calm that Article 7 will not be initiated against Poland," the official said.

Asked about changes to the judiciary, Dworczyk said that court reform was essential in Poland and that most Poles supported it. "It is a shame it is only now being done. I believe we will be able to persuade some of our EU allies to our point of view," he said.

In December, the European Commission (the EU's executive arm) launched disciplinary measures - known as Article 7 - over Poland's judicial reforms, giving Warsaw three months to amend its policies so that courts remain independent and the rule of law is upheld.

The next step under Article 7 would be a declaration by the Council of the European Union (made up of national ministers) that Poland is at risk of a serious breach of EU values. This would require a majority of 22 out of the 27 fellow EU countries.

Potentially the procedure could then result in sanctions against Poland, but all EU states would have to agree.