• Since we were the first to announce on Onet, Rafai Trzaskowski will deliver a speech on Thursday, December 2, at the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee meeting for Europe, Energy, Environment and Cybernetics.
  • At the invitation of members of the Chamber of Deputies, he will participate in a debate on the state of democracy in Poland and Central and Eastern Europe.
  • The discussion will be held remotely due to the epidemiological situation
  • More similar information can be found on Onet homepage

as We have already written on OnetThe Mayor of Warsaw announced a series of consultations before his speech. Today I report its effects.

Trzaskowski: Members of the United States Congress Concerned with the State of Democracy

– This meeting will be remote in nature, like all congressional hearings at the moment, due to the epidemiological situation. The mayors of the signatories have been invited to this hearing Charter of Free Cities. The mayor of Budapest, the mayor of Bratislava and the mayor of Prague will accompany me. We will talk about the situation in our country because members of the US Congress are very concerned about the state of democracy in Poland and Hungary, but they also have questions about what is happening in Slovakia and the Czech Republic – said Rafai Trzaskovsky today.

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Members of Congress are well aware of what is happening in Poland. They cite independent institutes and independent organizations that are researching all the time Democratic state in Poland He added that they are very concerned about what is happening in our country.

The rest of the article is below the video:

Trzaskovsky reported that as part of the consultations before his speech, he spoke, among other things, of ambassadors who led Polish diplomacy for many years – Marek Prauda and Ryszard Schnepf. He also met with representatives of the campaign against homophobia, because – as the president makes clear – everyone in Congress is concerned about the situation of LGBT people. He also spoke to representatives of the Free Courts, the Ombudsman, Marcin Wiecek, and Judge Wojciech Hermelinsky – incl. About how the last elections were conducted.

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Trzaszkowski: The rule of law is being violated more and more in Poland

– It is important that this voice be the voice of all those concerned with the state of democracy in Poland. All of my interlocutors – and I, too – are convinced that Poland is still a democracy, thanks mainly to a strong opposition and thanks to a strong civil society, thanks to strong local governments. Unfortunately, it is a country where the rule of law is often violated. Nota Penny, members of Congress in office are taking note of this. Tomorrow I will talk about it at a hearing before the US Congress – announced Trzaskovsky.

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Next week, the Biden administration is organizing a huge meeting of heads of government and states – a summit on democracy. There, on the sidelines of this summit, mayors and mayors of several European cities were asked to speak on the cause of democracy in the world. This also shows that the US administration, the US Congress, treat us as very reliable partners and know very well that not only governments are responsible for the situation in countries, the level of democracy, but also local governments and society are of great importance. The role played by civil society and NGOs. I will talk about it tomorrow at the hearing, but also on Monday at the event, which is taking place on the sidelines of the Democracy Summit, confirms the Vice President of the Post Office.

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As we have already said, the speech of the President of Warsaw will be devoted in general to an assessment of the state of democracy and the rule of law, as well as the protection of human rights in Central and Eastern Europe. The scheduled discussion will cover issues of rule of law, freedom of expression and the state of the justice system in Poland. Members of Congress are also interested in the construction of Nordstream 2 and the situation on the Polish-Belarusian border. Trzaskovsky’s speech will be combined with questions about the situation in our part of Europe.

Other signatories to the Charter of Free Cities will also appear

The Subcommittee on Europe, Energy, Environment and Cybernetics is made up of representatives from both Democrats and Republicans. This year, its members have already expressed their views on the situation in Poland. In August this year. Chairman Bill Keating (Democratic) and Vice President Brian Fitzpatrick (R) signed a statement warning against the adoption of the Revised Media Act (so-called lexTVN) by the House, emphasizing that it will. It fits with the “worrying trend regarding independent media in Poland”.

Apart from Rafai Trzaskovsky, the authorities of Budapest, Prague and Bratislava will be heard. It’s no coincidence. All four are signatories to the Charter of Free Cities. The aim of this initiative is to promote mutual cooperation and shared values ​​of democracy, freedom, human dignity and sustainable development, and to combat populism, nationalism, climate crisis, social inequality and stratification.

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The Charter of Free Cities was signed in December 2019 by Prague Mayor Zdenek Hcip, Mayor of Warsaw Rafai Trzaskovsky, and Budapest Mayor Gergeli Karaksoni and Matos Vallo in December 2019. This quickly attracted the attention of the foreign press. The Guardian described the four mayors and presidents as “an island in an illiberal storm”.

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This is another discussion about the state of democracy in Poland and Hungary

This is not the first time recently that members of the US Congress have discussed the state of democracy in Poland and Hungary. November 3, the so-called Helsinki Committee in the US Congress organized a special hearing on the erosion of democracy in Hungary and Poland. Three rapporteurs presented their expert opinions on the state of democracy in both countries to members of Congress. During the deliberations, members of Congress questioned what the US government could do in this regard.

“In Poland and Hungary we are witnessing a weakening of democratic freedoms and respect for the law in recent years,” Senator Ben Cardin said. He highlighted “disturbing trends”, including attacks targeting the LGBT community. Heather Conley, the former State Department diplomat responsible for Europe, noted that both countries should be held accountable and that they should be considered as suitable places for US forces.

On the other hand, Dalibor Roach, an analyst at the conservative think tank American Enterprise Institute, said that although “many American leaders of the conservative right are sympathetic to the current governments in Poland and Hungary,” it is worth noting that these countries are moving toward authoritarianism.

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