In a speech in the European Parliament, Law and Justice (PiS) party MEP and former Polish prime minister Beata Szydło accused the European Parliament of using the rule of law to its own benefit and politicizing the issue of the Polish judiciary in debates.
“The Polish government, in accordance with the constitution and the expectations of Poles, is conducting reforms,” she said.
She emphasized that EU institutions should not meddle in the election process of any member state. Szydło urged other MEPs not to give into the pressure of “political malcontents” who are trying to affect election results.
The MEP stressed that the majority of Polish society is expecting the judiciary reform and Law and Justice (PiS) will continue it because EU treaties permit that.
She criticized the debate in the European Parliament, claiming it was politicized. Szydło pointed out that Poland is being refused the ability to participate in sovereign decision-making.
“As Polish prime minister, I spoke here in the European Parliament, today I speak as a Polish MEP; Poland is a lawful country, and the Polish government is operating in accordance with the Polish constitution and Union treaties. Poland is an EU member state and is a sovereign country. That’s how it is and will be.”
Jako polski premier, mówiłam tutaj w PE, a dzisiaj mówię to, jako polski europoseł, że Polska jest krajem praworządnym, a polski rząd działa zgodnie z polską Konstytucją i unijnymi traktatami. Polska jest członkiem UE i jest suwerennym krajem. Tak jest i tak będzie. pic.twitter.com/lC2e8dQHxt
— Beata Szydło (@BeataSzydlo) February 11, 2020
“For the last four years we have had to explain ourselves over what has already been functioning the same way in other EU states for years. We have to explain reforms, which are introduced based on solutions from other member states. Why is this happening?” the MEP underlined.
Szydło believes that the European Parliament needs to reflect not on what is happening in Poland, but what is happening inside its own institution.
“Think about why Poland is being criticized for solutions which you have already implemented in your own countries. Why you are debating over competencies which EU treaties gave national parliaments, but not to us in Poland?” the MEP asked.
The Polish government has been pushing back against EU meddling in judicial reforms and has even offered to reform its judicial system to match the one in Germany. Poland has also argued that the original treaties that Poland signed to join the EU clearly indicate that judicial system and their structure will be decided internally by member states and not the EU.