JAKARTADAILY.ID - The European Union executive will demand Poland to pay a fine of around 70 million euros (USD 80 million) for failing to disassemble the controversial law for disciplining judges for challenging government policies, as reported by Reuters on Tuesday.
The dispute between Poland and the EU continues after the union accuses the national government of slipping away from democratic standards, including the independence of the judiciary. Warsaw denied this charge.
Previously, some judges have been dismissed by the Disciplinary Chamber of Supreme Court, which has the power to discipline judges. Some Polish judges see the organization as a tool to pressure judges in favor of the government.
"I regret that the situation of the rule of law in Poland shows no signs of improvement and judges continue to be under pressure," said Vera Jourova, EU Commissioner for Values and Transparency. She also added that the EU will continue to defend the rule of law and judicial independence.
January 11 was the initial deadline for Warsaw to report to the EU when and how the Disciplinary Chamber will be dismantled. Should Poland fail to follow the order, it is required to pay a fine of 1 million euros a day, with a 45-day deadline.
If Poland continues to refuse to obey the order sent by the European Court of Justice (ECJ), which decisions are binding to all members, the Commission would eventually deduct the amount from the EU funds allocated for Warsaw.
Meanwhile, a Polish minister, Kaleta, has accused the EU of making such "illegal demands" last week. Deduction of funds that were supposed to support its economic recovery from the pandemic is considered blackmail, and Poland would not give in.