A new majority took the helm of the Polish government. One of the new coalition government's biggest challenges is implementing reforms to restore and improve the rule of law.
DRI, together with leading Polish NGOs in the field of the rule of law, the Stefan Batory Foundation and the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, organised a closed seminar, "Rule of Law in Poland – New Perspectives", which took place on 11-12 December, in Warsaw.
Participating academics, lawyers, judges, prosecutors, NGO experts from Poland and abroad focused on two topics: the reform of the Constitutional Tribunal and handling of its judgments issued with unlawfully appointed judges on the bench, and the fate of "neo" judges – Polish justices appointed on recommendation from politically compromised National Council of Judiciary, with views towards establishing a procedure towards examining the status of these judges and ensuring a prompt review of their independence in line with EU law and European Convention on Human Rights.
DRI experts spoke at a panel on international standards in the rule of law transition and moderated a panel where participants elaborated on the Venice Commission standards for vetting judges and experiences with examining the status of judges in Albania and Ukraine.
Many of the topics covered in the panels and discussion echoed earlier work from our symposium with Verfassungsblog, a series of articles on the legal aspects of the October elections and on fixing the rule of law in Poland.