The head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed Poland’s will and determination to implement the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. The ruling in the case of Lech Wałęsa will be a priority.
On Wednesday, on the day of the swearing-in of Donald Tusk’s government, the new Minister of Foreign Affairs addressed letters to the President of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), Síofra O’Leary, and to members of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe. He informed them about the will and determination of the Polish authorities to respect the judgments issued by the European Court of Human Rights.
Radosław Sikorski reported that “the Polish authorities recognize the problems identified in numerous judgments of the Tribunal resulting from the judicial reforms carried out in recent years.”
Pilot judgment in the case of Wałęsa v. Poland
The Minister considered it a priority to implement the pilot judgment issued by the Court on November 23, 2023 in the case of Wałęsa v. Poland.
In this ruling, the Court identified a systemic problem “related to the failure to guarantee judicial independence and the violation of the right to a fair trial.” The head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that Poland would not request that this case be referred to the Grand Chamber of the Tribunal.
In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that, in cooperation with the Ministry of Justice, it would “take immediate action to implement the Tribunal’s rulings and restore the rule of law, in particular in the justice system.”
The head of the Ministry of Justice, Adam Bodnar, spoke earlier about the same verdict.
– The government will not raise any objections to the ruling in the Wałęsa v. Poland case, it will not appeal to the Grand Chamber, we will simply get to work to implement it as soon as possible so that this systemic problem is solved – he said today at a meeting of the National Council Judiciary, quoted by PAP.
Zbigniew Ziobro’s complaint to the Supreme Court chamber
On November 23, the ECtHR ruled in favor of Lech Wałęsa, awarding him compensation of EUR 30,000. The case was pending in Polish courts for six years. In 2005, the former president filed a lawsuit against Krzysztof Wyszkowski for the protection of personal rights. The former oppositionist said in one of the live programs that Wałęsa had been a collaborator of the Security Service with the nickname “Bolek” in the past.
The Court of Appeal accepted Wałęsa’s claim in its entirety and ordered Wyszkowski to apologize. In 2011, the Supreme Court rejected the cassation appeal against the judgment. In 2020, Zbigniew Ziobro filed an extraordinary complaint in this matter. The new chamber of Extraordinary Control and Public Affairs of the Supreme Court overturned the judgment, and Wałęsa appealed to the ECtHR.