Poland calls opinion of Venice Commision 'political'

Polish foreign minister says opinion of Venice Commission on changes to constitutional court is politically motivated

Photo by: Reuters (Archive)
Photo by: Reuters (Archive)

Poland's Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski speaks during an interview with Reuters in Warsaw, Poland, December 30, 2015.

Poland will dispute the opinion of the Venice Commission regarding changes to the country's constitutional court, the foreign minister said on Thursday, after defining the report as “political.”

The Venice Commission, a panel of constitutional law experts from the human rights body Council of Europe, submitted a draft report warning that reforms by the right-wing government of Poland put democracy, human rights and the rule of law at risk.

Foreign Minister of Poland Witold Waszczykowski said on public radio on Thursday that the ministry has received a draft version of the opinion.

"We see it [Venice Commission report] not as a ruling, but as a political position," the foreign minister told Polish Radio on Thursday.

"We'll dispute this opinion," he added.

The European Commission has previously said it wants to see the opinion of the Venice Commission before making its own assessment of Poland's adherence to EU rule of law standards.

Although the Council of Europe's findings are not binding, the European Union is likely to review them as part of its own unprecedented probe into the rule of law in Poland.

The commission is due to publish its official report by Saturday.

The constitutional crisis in Poland deepened on Wednesday after the country's top court ruled that the government's overhaul of itself was illegal. stirring concerns about democracy and the rule of law in the EU's largest eastern member.

TRTWorld and agencies