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Poland's Tusk announces opposition bill to amend constitution

01.10.2021 19:30
Former centrist Prime Minister Donald Tusk, who leads Poland's main opposition grouping, the Civic Coalition (KO), on Friday unveiled a bill to amend the country's constitution so that any potential exit from the European Union required a clear mandate from the public or lawmakers.
Polands opposition leader Donald Tusk on Friday announced a bill to amend the constitution.
Poland's opposition leader Donald Tusk on Friday announced a bill to amend the constitution.PAP/Wojciech Olkuśnik

Tusk, a former top European Union official, told a news conference that the project was designed to create "an iron-clad guarantee that Poland will remain in the EU for as long as the Polish people desire," state news agency PAP reported. 

Under the proposal, the decision to leave the EU would have to be made in a national referendum or by a two-thirds majority in both chambers of parliament. 

Such an "iron-clad guarantee" is necessary, Tusk said, because "the words and actions" of the ruling conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party "show beyond doubt that Poland's presence in the EU is in danger."

According to the former Polish prime minister, the new bill is "a very simple, logical idea" designed to "safeguard the Polish people and also signal to the EU that our membership is not on the line."

Tusk, who headed the European Council for five years until 2019, said his KO grouping had collected the necessary signatures of 92 MPs and would now submit the bill to parliament.

The party will seek to make sure lawmakers in the Sejm, the lower house of Poland's bicameral parliament, discuss the bill within 30 days, the PAP news agency reported. 

Earlier this month, the leader of the governing conservatives, Jarosław Kaczyński, said in an interview with PAP that "there will not be any Polexit whatsoever."

He added that "such claims" were "a propaganda trick," employed "repeatedly" by his party's political opponents.

"We see Poland's future unequivocally in the EU, but want to resolve the crisis currently besetting the bloc," Kaczyński said in the interview.

It came after Ryszard Terlecki, a senior Law and Justice lawmaker, told an international business conference at the start of September that Poland could be forced to "search for drastic solutions" if the EU did not take on "a shape that is acceptable" to Warsaw.

According to some commentators, Terlecki was implying Poland could make an exit.


Source: PAP