About: Article 7

‘Soros orchestra’: The next chapter in Hungary’s Article 7 odyssey

The General Affairs Council held a thematic hearing on Tuesday (10 December) on the ongoing Article 7 procedure against Hungary, tackling the alleged breaches of judicial independence, academic freedom and freedom of expression, particularly media freedom.

Polish reform erodes judicial autonomy: top court

Poland's Supreme Court ruled on Thursday (5 December) that a new judicial council charged with nominating and disciplining judges lacks independence, calling into question the government's court reforms.
Politics 02-12-2019

Thousands in Poland rally around suspended judge

Thousands of Poles joined rallies on Sunday (1 December) in Warsaw and other cities nationwide to show support for a judge suspended for having questioned the government's controversial court reforms.

With new judiciary appointments, Poland further escalates row with Brussels

The Polish Sejm began its new parliamentary term with a controversial approval of three new members of the Constitutional Tribunal, including two members of the ruling party, drawing criticism from the opposition and raising the stakes in the stand-off with Brussels.

MEPs shut out of Hungary Council hearing as rule of law situation worsens

MEPs are reeling after being shut out of a Council hearing under the Article 7 procedure against Hungary for systemic breaches to the rule of law, as the situation in the country further deteriorates.

EU court puts legality of Polish court reform in doubt

Europe's top court on Tuesday (19 November) ruled that Polish judges must decide on the validity of a disciplinary chamber imposed on them by the government, in a possible setback for Warsaw's controversial judicial reforms.
Elections 15-10-2019

Poland’s parliament on knife-edge as opposition takes upper house

Poland's nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party appears to have narrowly won a second term in power, final results from the parliamentary election on Sunday (13 October) showed, but its drive to push through its agenda may be hampered by its loss of the upper house.

EU grills Hungary over rule of law concerns

EU affairs ministers grilled Hungary on Monday (16 September) over Prime Minister Viktor Orban's tightening of restrictions around free media, judges, academics, minorities and rights groups, which the bloc worries weakens democracy in the ex-communist country.

EU praises Romanian U-turn on controversial reforms

The European Commission on Tuesday (4 June) welcomed Romania's pledge to renounce controversial judicial reforms that had triggered strong criticism and threats of sanctions from Brussels.
Future EU 13-05-2019

Romania’s Schengen perspective in jeopardy over rule of law

The European Commission said on Monday (13 May) that Romania is close to being hit with Article 7 of the EU treaties, the heaviest punishment for a member state deviating from rule of law fundamentals. Losing the chance to join the Schengen zone any time soon would be one of the consequences.
EU Elections 2019 02-05-2019

EU country briefing: Hungary

Hungary became part of the EU during the 2004 “big bang” enlargement. The country is also part of the Visegrád Group, a cultural and political alliance, together with fellow EU states Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

France and Germany pile pressure on Poland and Hungary over rule of law

As EU affairs ministers in Luxembourg on Wednesday (9 April) again discussed the rule of law in Poland and Hungary, a joint Franco-German statement proposed a new hearing after the European elections in June.

Timmermans invites EU members to ‘bite the bullet’ on rule of law

The European Commission launched on Wednesday (3 April) a process of reflection about whether member states would agree to be supervised on possible breaches of rule of law. The Commission First Vice President Frans Timmermans said it is now up to the capitals to decide if they want to “bite the bullet”.

Belgium, Germany make joint proposal for EU rule of law monitoring mechanism

Germany and Belgium put forward on Tuesday (19 March) a joint proposal for a rule of law peer review in all EU member states. The new mechanism is meant to be applied in parallel to the already existing Article 7 procedure enshrined in the treaties.
EU Elections 2019 28-01-2019

Hungary takes aim at ‘Soros man’ Timmermans

Hungary will not take part in this week’s European Parliament debate on the rule of law in the country, a government spokesperson said on Monday (28 January) and insisted that Commission First Vice President Frans Timmermans, who deals with this issue, should be suspended in the run-up to the European elections.
EU Elections 2019 18-01-2019

Parliament seeks financial punishment for countries breaching rule of law

European Union countries that undermine the bloc's democratic principles could lose EU funds, under a draft law backed by the European Parliament on Thursday (17 January).

Poland gets a pass as Romanian presidency struggles with rule of law approach

EU affairs ministers met in Brussels on Tuesday (8 January) for the first meeting of 2019 under the helm of the Romanian presidency. Rule of law matters, highly prominent in previous sessions, were off the agenda for the first time.
EU Elections 2019 18-12-2018

Weber: There is no special treatment for Viktor Orban in EPP

For the European People's Party, it is clear that Europe must stand by its principles and defend the rule of law, Manfred Weber, the head of the EPP group in the European Parliament, told EURACTIV Poland.
Future EU 18-12-2018

Poland bows to EU court reversal of Supreme Court retirements

Poland on Monday (17 December) bowed to a ruling by the EU’s top court ordering it to suspend a law that had lowered the retirement age of its Supreme Court judges amid concerns about judicial independence. The European Court of Justice (ECJ)...
Future EU 17-12-2018

Opposition MPs ejected from Hungary state TV after protest

Security guards ejected two independent lawmakers from Hungary's state television building on Monday (17 December) after they tried to read out a petition, a day after police used tear gas against pro-democracy protesters in Budapest.
Future EU 14-12-2018

Belgian PM suggests Visegrad countries should be ousted from Schengen

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel said on Friday (14 December) EU countries that show no solidarity in the management of migration open the debate about whether they have a place in the Schengen area.
Politics 14-12-2018

Tweets of the Week: Strasbourg attack, democracy challenged in Hungary, and Theresa May

Outrage over Strasbourg attack, democracy in Hungary continues to crack, and Theresa May avoids the sack.
Elections 13-12-2018

Polish PM wins confidence vote ahead of 2019 election

Theresa May will not be the only Prime Minister coming to the two-day summit starting on Thursday (13 December) after having won a confidence vote the previous day.
Future EU 13-12-2018

Chaos as Hungarian MPs pass ‘slave law’ and government-controlled court

Rare scenes of chaos gripped the Hungarian parliament Wednesday (12 December) as it passed a controversial judicial reform, as well as labour legislation that critics call a "slave law".

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