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Poland: President backpedals on controversial commission on Russian influence

2023-06-02T11:52:01.826Z

Highlights: The Polish president announced, Friday, June 2, an amendment modifying in depth a law creating a commission on Russian influence. The European Commission and the United States have expressed "concern" about the creation of the commission. In Poland, the commission was described as "unconstitutional" and "Stalinist" by the opposition and many lawyers. The opposition qualifies the text as "lex Tusk" (Tusk law) named after the leader of the main centrist opposition party Civic Platform (PO)


The Polish president announced, Friday, June 2, an amendment deeply modifying a law creating a commission on Russian influence, sharply ...


The Polish president announced, Friday, June 2, an amendment modifying in depth a law creating a commission on Russian influence, strongly criticized by the United States and the European Union.

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This removes a lot of the controversies that arise about it," Andrzej Duda said just days after signing the text, indicating that his proposal removed provisions allowing de facto bans on people holding public office for 10 years.

A "Stalinist" commission

The law signed on Monday provoked strong reactions in both Washington and Brussels. The European Commission and the United States have expressed "concern" about the creation of the commission, with the State Department saying it could be abused to interfere with free and fair elections in Poland scheduled for the fall. In Poland, the commission was described as "unconstitutional" and "Stalinist" by the opposition and many lawyers. The amendment that the president was to table this Friday provides in particular that the initial sanction of prohibition to hold public office and for ten years be replaced by a simple finding of the commission that a person acts "under Russian influence" and that he "does not guarantee the proper execution of activities of public interest".

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While supporting the creation of this committee, the President notably indicated that the nine members of the committee should not be chosen by Parliament. According to the Polish populist government, such a commission is essential to eliminate Russian influence in Poland, a loyal ally of Ukraine attacked by Moscow. The opposition qualifies the text as "lex Tusk" (Tusk law) named after the leader of the main centrist opposition party Civic Platform (PO), Donald Tusk, former Polish Prime Minister in 2007-2014 then President of the European Council, bête noire of the government in place. According to her, the law is intended to compromise the opponents of the government in place and prevent Donald Tusk from winning the autumn election.

Source: lefigaro

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