Poland’s veto of EU budget over rule of law blackmail is necessary, says Justice Minister Ziobro

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Poland’s Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro, who leads a junior partner in the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) bloc, believes that the rule of law issue is just a pretext for reducing national sovereignty and making the payment of EU funds dependent on political criteria.

Ziobro feels that Poland has no alternative but to categorically reject such an approach.

The settlement negotiated by the German EU presidency with the European Parliament includes a mechanism which would allow the European Commission to move to stop EU funding on the basis of non-compliance with the rule of law.

Such a sanction could be imposed with a qualified majority in the EU Council of ministers, thereby bypassing the Article 7 of the Lisbon Treaty which states that any sanctions must be levied unanimously by the European Council of member states.

Minister Ziobro argued that the “German presidency’s proposal is aimed at Poland’s sovereignty”. In his view, “this is not about the rule of law but it is an attempt at an institutional and political enslavement radically limiting national sovereignty.”

He was certain that both Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán will use their power of veto to stop a measure which is against the national interest of both countries.

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