Poland

38 million people
12,480 USD GNI (PPP)
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Distinguished Fellow for Democracy Studies

Politicized revisions of the past help antidemocratic leaders justify their actions while sowing divisions at home and abroad.

Allowing members of parliament to reopen cases and establishing a new judicial body that will also oversee elections is an invitation to abuse of the system. 

Research Director, Europe & Eurasia

The leadership in Warsaw has gone well beyond the antidemocratic playbook pioneered by Viktor Orbán’s Hungary, brazenly fracturing the rule of law and threatening European integrity.

Freedom House released a statement in response to Poland's parliament's approval of legislation designed to exercise control over the judiciary.

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Special Reports

The Assault on Press Freedom in Poland

Poland has become a crucial battleground in the drive by authoritarian-minded leaders to gain control over political discourse and limit media pluralism.

Policing Belief: The Impact of Blasphemy Laws on Human Rights

Policing Belief: The Impact of Blasphemy Laws on Human Rights examines the human rights implications of domestic blasphemy and religious insult laws using the case studies of seven countries—Algeria, Egypt, Greece, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan and Poland—where such laws exist both on paper and in practice. Without exception, blasphemy laws violate the fundamentalfreedom of expression, as they are by definition intended to protect religious institutions and religious doctrine– i.e., abstract ideas and concepts – from insult or offence. At their most benign, such laws lead to self-censorship.  In Greece and Poland, two of the more democratic countries examined in the study, charges brought against high-profile artists, curators and writers serve as a warning to others that certain topics are off limits. At their worst, in countries such as Pakistan and Malaysia, such laws lead to overt governmental censorship and individuals are both prosecuted and subject to severe criminal penalties including lengthy jail sentences.

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