Poland STANDOFF: EU is ‘READY’ to punish Poles and suspend country’s voting rights

Wednesday, July 26, 2017
By Paul Martin

BRUSSELS’ stand-off with Poland reached crisis point today as senior eurocrats said they are prepared to take the nuclear option of suspending the country’s voting rights within hours if necessary.

Wed, Jul 26, 2017

In a further sign of deteriorating relations between the EU and Warsaw one of the bloc’s top officials said Article 7, which is designed to kick rogue states off the Council of ministers, can be triggered immediately.

The rest of Europe has become increasingly alarmed by proposed changes to the way the judiciary is run in Poland, which the EU says will hand far too much power over the courts to politicians.

Warsaw has responded with open fury to EU pleas to change course, insisting it has the right as a sovereign nation to implement whatever changes to its domestic institutions it sees fit.

Today the bruising battle between the two capitals, which has been raging on for several years, reached its crescendo as eurocrats finally lost patience and threatened to boot Poland off the EU Council.

First vice-president Frans Timmermans, the deputy of EU Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker, said Warsaw has one month to comply or Brussels will hit the nuclear button.

Article 7 has never been tested in practice before, and its triggering would mark an extraordinary and unprecedented breakdown in relations between the EU and one of its member state.

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