Poland’s Chief Justice on Thursday partially froze a disciplinary chamber for judges at the heart of a deepening dispute with the European Union over judicial independence that could see Warsaw face fines or even an eventual loss of funding. On Friday, a government minister accused the head of Poland’s Supreme Court of bowing to the demands of „colonial” European Union officials in a row over the independence of the judiciary that could see Warsaw face financial penalties.
Poland’s justice minister, the architect of the judicial reforms opposed by the EU, also criticised Brussels separately. He said Warsaw should not bow to „blackmail” and that, while he backed EU membership, it should not come „at any cost”.
Poland faces an August 16 deadline to disband a disciplinary chamber that the EU’s top court says does not guarantee judicial independence and undercuts EU laws. If Poland fails to comply, it could be fined or eventually lose some EU funding.
The ruling coalition, led by the nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party, is split over whether to resist or compromise to avoid risking financial penalties.