PM: State Attorney’s Office, courts ‘free from any government pressures’

NEWS 24.05.2022 20:15
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Source: N1

The State Attorney's Office and courts are free of any government pressure in their work, Prime Minister, Andrej Plenkovic, said on Tuesday, opening a conference of the Supreme and Constitutional courts, which was also attended by judges of other Croatian courts and the EU Court of Justice.

“The State Attorney’s Office, USKOK (anti-corruption office) and courts are independent in their work, free of any political government pressure. There is cooperation, but no government influence. No one here is privileged, party membership does not protect from accountability, and the legal order is respected,” Plenkovic said.

Judicial independence is a right and privilege gained in the interest of the rule of law, and it must be tied to responsibility and professionalism, he added.

“In the synergy of quality reform measures, responsibility and professionalism within the judiciary lies the key to trust in the judiciary, which must be effective, whose case law should be standardized and decisions legal and unbiased.”

The values on which the EU rests are part of the European acquis, which is crucial for ensuring a space of freedom, security and justice, Plenkovic said.

When Croatia joined the EU in 2013, the acquis became part of its legal order and since then Croatian courts have to apply both national and European law, which was preceded by a comprehensive judicial reform, Plenkovic said.

The government’s program of further judicial reform is contained in the National Recovery and Resilience Plan and comprises 13 major reform steps and six development projects, he added.

EU Court of Justice president Koen Lenaerts said this conference was an excellent opportunity to exchange views on legal matters as well as on common trust which, he added, is the basis of the EU.

Supreme Court president Radovan Dobronic said the conference was an opportunity to elevate Croatian case law and align it with EU standards by applying the same regulations based on EU legislation, such as the directive on consumers, and by comparing Croatian case law with all decisions delivered by the national courts of the 27 member states and the EU Court of Justice case law.

Constitutional Court president Miroslav Separovic said national constitutional courts and European courts shared common values.

That makes European values the values of our constitutional order, so there should be no disputes nor problems in the relations between the Croatian Constitutional Court and the EU Court of Justice, he added.

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