Polish independence: EU warns Ukraine watches

Польский майдан: ЕС предупреждает, Украина наблюдает

In Poland there was a political crisis. In Warsaw, intensify the police by reinforcements from other cities. The opposition party “Civic platform”, Nowoczesna (“Modernity”), “Polish peasant party” on Saturday night under the diet building has gathered more than 2 thousand demonstrators. Polish militiamen had to push the opposition to the deputies of the ruling party were able to leave the Parliament building.

The Prime Minister of Poland Beata Szydlo said that the opposition pits the poles among themselves and trying to assert itself after the defeat in the parliamentary elections in 2015, the Minister of internal Affairs of Poland Mariusz Blashak sees in the speech of the opposition attempt a coup. The night of 5 June 1992, during a similar action had ousted the government of Prime Minister Jan Olszewski, who was in conflict with the President of Poland Lech Walesa for the rude attempts of the Polish lustration of officials according to the law that was considered unconstitutional.

The opposition without the right to vote

Something the head of the Polish Ministry of interior rights. In Poland there is indeed a misunderstanding between the current government and the opposition, which wanted to restore its influence on political processes. Following the results of parliamentary elections in 2015 the Polish Parliament is dominated by one conservative party “Law and justice” (PiS) Jaroslaw Kaczynski (brother of President Lech Kaczynski, who died in a plane crash near Smolensk). PiS is 234 seats in the Sejm (lower house of Parliament) and formed a constitutional majority. “Legalists” have carte Blanche in legislation and hold key Ministerial posts.

Польский майдан: ЕС предупреждает, Украина наблюдает

Jaroslaw Kaczynski

News on topic: Prime Minister of Poland accused the opposition of wanting to embroil the poles

Taking advantage of their monopoly on power, the PiS was to limit civilian control and ceased to consider the opinion of the opposition. Deputies from PiS voted for restricting media access to meetings of Parliament to five channels. Not the conservatives consulted with the opposition when he formed the budget for 2017 PiS cut pensions and social programs due to difficult times in the economic sphere. Despite the fact that the deputies from the “Civic platform” blocked the rostrum of the speaker of Parliament, to disrupt the vote, the representatives of the constitutional majority went to another room and passed the budget.

The object of criticism was the decision of the PiS to restrict the rights of the constitutional court. The Polish Parliament adopted the law, according to which in order to contest the conformity of laws to the Constitution, you need 2/3 majority in the constitutional court (previously a simple majority). The opposition believes that the current government violates the system of checks and contradictions inherent in democratic regimes.

The opposition denies the legitimacy of the recent decisions of the Parliament. The leader of the party Nowoczesna Ryszard Petru convinced that if the opposition will not be able to negotiate with the PiS and to find a compromise, Poland will hold early parliamentary elections.

In Polish society there is widespread discontent with the current government, and most of the poles voted for PiS. The basis of the political program of the party was the idea of increasing the welfare of poles, tightening of the migration regime, the growing influence of the Catholic Church in society, reducing dependence on foreign investment, the rate of local producers. Typical economic nationalism in the interests of the mainly devout Polish society.

The power of the evil EU

However, the political course of the PiS criticism from the EU. Brussels has consistently supported the actions of the opposition. The President of the European Council Donald Tusk, who previously held the post of Prime Minister of Poland from the party “Civic platform”, thanked the opposition demonstrators for the activity and called on the Polish authorities and the opposition “to respect the people, the provisions of the Constitution and morality”. He stressed that information limitations transform democracy into a dictatorship. More harsh in their statements, was the Minister of foreign Affairs of Luxembourg Jean Asselborn, who proposed to introduce against Poland sanctions if the current government will not repeal the law restricting the rights of the constitutional court. According to article 7 of the EC Agreement, the member may lose voting rights in the bodies of the Association in connection with the serious and continuous violation of European values. Possible informal restrictive measures in the economic sphere. According to the Minister of development and Finance Mateusz Moravcova, about 20% of investors are reluctant to invest in the economy of Poland until the resolution of the political crisis.

Польский майдан: ЕС предупреждает, Украина наблюдает

News: Ukraine and Poland intend to create an Institute of good neighbourliness, – Duda

The true cause of pressure on PiS is moderate euroscepticism in his party. Unlike the British and French eurosceptics, Polish government supports the EU membership and in favour of the deepening of integration in economic and defence sectors. At the same time, the PiS against the growing influence of supranational bodies of the EU and the transformation of the Union into a Federal superstate. The Polish government relies on an active military-political cooperation with the US through NATO in order to dilute the influence of the EU. PiS agrees with the approach of the Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orban, who supports strengthening the power of national authorities of member countries who have the right to disagree with decisions and recommendations of the EU. Poland should have an independent position, responsible primarily to the national interests, not the plans of Brussels. According to the Minister of justice and attorney General of Poland Zbigniew Ziobro, supranational bodies should not impose their will on Poland, because such an approach is contrary to the “national pride” of the poles.

The current political course of Poland defies the European unity, strengthen the positions of eurosceptics who seek to ease the integration within the EU. Support Poland needed the EU. Poland is the sixth economy in Europe. Warsaw in its development oriented member countries that entered the EU after 2004, and the participants of the “Eastern partnership”. France and Germany considered Poland as a center of power in Central and Eastern Europe and carried out General consultations on current problems and prospects of European integration in the format of “Weimar triangle”.

It is not excluded that with the help of anti-government rallies the EU hopes to correct the political course of the authorities of Poland to their advantage. Participating in demonstrations of the opposition party “Civic platform” and “Polish peasant party” part of the European people’s party, which is represented in all EU institutions and which usually come from initiatives to deepen European integration. Brussels Warsaw demonstrates its willingness to impose sanctions and to provoke a “Polish independence” if the government will not abandon the moderate euroscepticism in its policy. Such a precedent has already taken place in the practice of the EU, where individual member countries have imposed sanctions against Austria. In 1999 according to the results of parliamentary elections in Austria, the Parliament passed far-right Austrian freedom party. The Chairman of that political party, Joerg Haider, had a reputation as a neo-Nazi in the European society. Bilateral sanctions continued up until the Austrian freedom party refused to form a coalition with the Austrian people’s party and jörg Haider has voluntarily resigned from the post of party Chairman.

Польский майдан: ЕС предупреждает, Украина наблюдает

Who is better for Ukraine?

It is not necessary to make definite conclusions about which side of the political crisis in Poland, the most profitable for Ukraine. On the one hand, the ruling party PiS supported the extension of anti-Russian sanctions. At the last summit of the EU, Poland and the UK have proposed to tighten sanctions against Russia in connection with events in Syria, to prolong the existing sanctions for six months, and once a year. The President of Poland Andrzej Duda encouraged to abandon ineffective negotiations in Minsk in favor of the Budapest format with the inclusion in the negotiation process on the peaceful settlement in the Donbass, Poland and the United States. In early December, Ukraine and Poland signed a General agreement on cooperation in the defense sphere, which will include cooperation in the defence industry, research in the field of armaments, modernization of existing and delivery of new defensive equipment to Ukraine.

Related news: Ambassador of Poland considers the slogans of the “March of eagles” does not affect relations between the two countries

On the other hand, was not without a spoon of tar in Ukrainian-Polish relations since coming to power PiS. The ruling party actively flirts with the anti-Ukrainian minded Polish ultra-nationalists in order to unite the vast number of the electorate and to weaken the position of eurosceptics, such as the party of “Change” Mateusz Piskorski, which stands for closer ties with Russia in political and economic sphere. For the sake of radical nationalists, the Polish Parliament unanimously adopted a resolution in which the Volyn tragedy of 1943 recognized the genocide committed by OUN-UPA against the poles. Ukraine has never adopted laws on anti-Polish oppression of the Ukrainians regime of President Jozef Pilsudski, the destruction of Ukrainian villages Sagrini, Pavlokoma, Verkhovyna during the Second world war. The current government of Poland blind eye to anti-Ukrainian actions of right-wing organizations. During the “March of the eagles Przemysl and Lviv” in Przemysl, the Polish far-right chanted “Death to Ukrainians”. Such incidents have become a convenient excuse for Russian media to prove that Poland is a strong anti-Ukrainian sentiments.

Польский майдан: ЕС предупреждает, Украина наблюдает

Nationalists March in Przemysl

Related news: Ukrainian migrants in Poland: Who, where and how much they earn

Ambiguous attitude to Ukraine and the opposition. When the party “Civic platform” was in power, Poland supported the Euromaidan, joined the anti-Russian sanctions after the annexation of Crimea. However, the ex-President of Poland from the party “Civil platform” Bronislav Komorovsky has avoided sharp criticism of Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. He made conflicting statements about the fact that despite the threats that emanate from Russia, Poland is security through NATO membership. Although the Baltic countries started to strengthen their defenses, regardless of membership in the Alliance. Bronislaw Komorowski was convinced that Ukraine’s rapprochement with the EU should not contribute to the deterioration of relations with Russia that were largely in line with the position of ex-President Viktor Yanukovych. In November in the Russian media appeared information that the leader of the opposition “Polish peasant party” Vladislav Cominac-Reed called for the abolition of anti-Russian sanctions and restoration of economic and trade relations with Russia. A separate business circles of Poland, which exported food to Russia, share a similar approach.

Related news: Despite the friendship on the political level, the relationship of poles and Ukrainians are going to be stressful

The deterioration of relations between Poland and the EU is against the interests of Ukraine. If member countries of the EU would impose on Poland sanctions and deprive the right to vote in the European institutions, then Warsaw will not be able to lobby the interests of the city, including on the question of extending the anti-Russian sanctions. For many years Poland is one of the closest political partners of Ukraine in the EU. Warsaw is traditionally wary of Russia, sees it as a potential threat to their safety. Poland along with the UK is one of the most active proponents of the policy of containment of Russian aggression in Europe.

George Kuhaleyshvili

political analyst on international Affairs,

master of political science