About two months before Poland’s parliamentary elections, the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party has apparently laid out plans for a controversial investigation into alleged Russian influence. Law and Justice MP Marek Ast told state news agency PAP today that no similar investigative commission would be used before the October 15 elections. The reason is the delay in the necessary legislation.
According to Ast, there may not be enough time left before the election. Law and Justice has been accused of wanting to start a witch hunt with the committee – especially against opposition leader Donald Tusk.
Tusk is the head of the Liberal Civic Platform, the biggest opposition to the Law and Justice Party, which has been in power since 2015. Although this leads in the polls, he must fear for their majority coalition. Critics of the government have seen PiS’s electoral calculus in lobbying for the commission: Opposition members like Tusk in particular — Poland’s prime minister and then president of the European Council until 2019 — could be barred from taking over government even if PiS is defeated. .
The EU Commission called for action
The committee should investigate who may have acted under Russian influence in the period 2007-2022. A person accused of this could be prevented from holding public office without the right to appeal to a court.
The law called for the EU Commission to take action, something the Polish government has already disagreed with over its handling of the judiciary and the media. The leadership in Warsaw rejects the accusations of violating the rule of law.
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