In 2018, the dispute over the rule of law in Poland produced a significant breakthrough in the process of the European integration. The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) declared itself competent to deal with complaints about “systemic” violation of the rule of law in EU member states. Moreover, the European Commission decided to use the infringement procedure to halt the destruction of the independent judiciary in Poland. Although EU institutions acted in line with EU treaties, these decisions had a truly revolutionary character. In the past, the Commission and the CJEU were unwilling to make use of treaty provisions that would have allowed them to intervene when the independence of the judiciary in an EU member state was at risk.
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Piotr Buras is a journalist, author and expert in German and European politics, currently serving as the Head of European Council on Foreign Relation’s Warsaw office. Between 2008 and 2012, Mr Buras worked as a columnist and Berlin correspondent for “Gazeta Wyborcza”, the biggest Polish daily. He started his professional career in the late 1990s at the Center for International Relations in Warsaw, one of the first Polish think tanks. He continued his career at the Institute for German Studies at the University of Birmingham and at the University of Wroclaw (Poland). Mr Buras was also Visiting Fellow at the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik in Berlin. Mr Buras’ recent book Moslems and the other Germans. The Reinvention of the Berlin Republic was published in Polish in 2011. Some of the leading outlets such as Politico, The New York Times, World Politics Review, publish his articles, opinion pieces, interviews and quotes regularly.