Polish president's office challenges top court's decisions

Polish president's office challenges top court's decisions
Protesters holding a Polish national flag shout slogans as they gather in front of the Presidential Palace to show President Andrzej Duda their disapproval after he signed the latest legislation on the Supreme Court into law, in Warsaw, Poland, Thursday, July 26, 2018. Thousands of people in Warsaw and other cities in Poland are protesting against the latest moves by the ruling right-wing party aimed at helping it take control of the Supreme Court and other courts. (AP Photo/Alik Keplicz)

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — An aide to Poland’s President Andrzej Duda says a decision by the nation’s Supreme Court to suspend early retirement of its judges is unlawful.

The statement Friday was the latest in a tug-of-war over the conservative ruling party’s steps to take control of the justice system as it changes legislation and installs loyalists in top judicial positions. European Union leaders say it threatens Poland’s rule of law and are pursuing sanctioning procedures.

The court has suspended the implementation of new legislation that forces the retirement of judges aged 65 and over, and has asked the EU’s Court of Justice to check if the early retirement plans abide by EU treaties.

Duda’s aide said Poland’s law does not allow for the suspension. Duda is currently weighing exemptions.