Mr. Ziobro and “Gender Gibberish”

Guest contribution by Milosz Hodún

Justice minister Zbigniew Ziobro has vowed to submit a motion aimed at withdrawing Poland from the Istanbul Convention, the Council of Europe´s Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence. He said the Convention contains harmful, ideological elements. He also stressed that Poland is doing just fine with protection of women rights and prevention of domestic violence without the Convention. Ziobro’s deputy Marcin Romanowski added that Poland should drop out of the Istanbul Convention as soon as possible, calling the treaty “gender gibberish.”

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EU Special Summit: Pressure Needed in the Dispute over the Rule of Law

3 Questions & Answers with Member of European Parliament (MEP) Moritz Körner

During the negotiations at the EU Special Summit of Heads of State and Government, every position and possible concessions are meticulously fought over. This is also a good sign – after all, finding compromises is at the heart of European policy. We talk with Moritz Körner (Renew Europe/FDP), Member of the European Parliament, about the current situation, to see what can be achieved through the negotiation package and which points leave room for improvement.

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[Study] Czech Seeders of Disinformation: Addressing Knowledge Gaps and Drawing Policy Implications

Nikola Hořejš, Matěj Jungwirth, Jitka Uhrová, STEM Research Institute

Short Summary

In the spring of 2020, the STEM institute, supported by the Prague office of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, carried out an extensive investigation of Czech seeders of disinformation. They are currently estimated to make up approximately 5 % of the Czech society. Through the combination of a quantitative survey and 13 qualitative in-depth interviews, the seeder group was found to be more affluent, educated and interested in politics than media stereotypes would suggest. Furthermore, seeders’ motivations and media literacy levels vary greatly, wherefore one-size-fits-all solutions could be rather counterproductive. For example, some groups of seeders would benefit from basic media literacy initiatives, while others are immune to any official communication or even warnings.

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Wanted: An Effective and Sustainable Financial Framework for Europe

For the next two days, Heads of State and Government of the European Union are meeting in the EU capital. On the agenda of the European Council: the Multiannual Financial Framework and the “Next Generation EU” programme for the rebuilding of the EU after the Corona health crisis. EU-expert Thomas Ilka has the latest news on the content of the negotiations, lines of conflict, actors and timeframes.

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Run-Off Vote: State Restructuring in Poland Continues

Re-election of national conservative President Andrzej Duda reveals the weakness of the opposition

Strong President in Poland

The Polish President is not only a ceremonial representative of the country. He is commander-in-chief of the armed forces and can veto legislative decisions without providing reasons. In order to pass laws against his veto , a 3/5 majority in parliament (Sejm) is required – and such a majority does not currently exist in Poland. To make matters more complicated for the PiS, in 2019 it lost the majority in the Senate, which can refer back and thus delay resolutions of the Sejm. Thus, in order to implement its national conservative course, the PiS needed its own man in the presidential palace.

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Presidential Election in Poland: Sunday Will Be Decisive

Two weeks after the first round of the presidential elections in Poland, the decisive run-off election will take place on Sunday. The Poles will not only decide on their head of state for the coming term of office, but also on the direction the country will take in the coming years. Should the incumbent Andrzej Duda, candidate of the ruling national conservative party “Law and Justice” (PiS), win, the PiS could continue undisturbed with its controversial plans to restructure the judiciary and media for at least another three years, i.e. until the next parliamentary elections. However, with the candidate Rafał Trzaskowski, who is supported by the largest opposition alliance “Civic Coalition” (KO), the opposition can hope to break the PiS power monopoly.

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