There is an ongoing discussion in the European Parliament on media freedom and the state of the rule of law in Poland. The deputy head of the European Commission, Vera Jourova, signaled that “when pluralism and freedom of the media are threatened, democracy is also threatened.” “We are concerned that the media repolonization strategy is contrary to our values,” she said.
11 August The Sejm adopted an amendment to the Broadcasting Act known as the anti-TVN act. It was supported by 228 MPs, with 216 votes against and 10 abstentions. According to commentators, the new regulations, the draft of which were submitted to the Sejm by PiS MPs, are aimed at the independence of TVN. Many journalists, politicians and institutions in several dozen Polish cities protested against the changes in the media law. citizens manifested. September 9, Senate rejected the amendment in its entirety.
Deputy head of the European Commission about lex TVN
During the plenary session of the European Parliament, MEPs, representatives of the Council of the European Union and the European Commission debate on the amendment to the Broadcasting Act adopted by the Sejm (and rejected by the Senate), the so-called lex TVN. The vote on the resolution is scheduled for Thursday.
During the debate, the deputy head of the European Commission, Vera Jourova, took the floor. She mentioned her visit to Poland at the end of August on the occasion of the 41st anniversary of August 1980. – I reminded Poles and Polish authorities that we need a strong Poland in the very center of the European Union, built around our common values and mutual trust – she reminded.
Jourova further noted that “when pluralism and freedom of the media are threatened, democracy is also threatened.” – We are afraid that the strategy of media repolonization is contrary to our values - she mentioned.
The deputy head of the European Commission said that the Commission “looked at the new media law, the so-called lex TVN”. – I heard a lot of concerns about the bill. I also know that the Senate rejected this bill on Thursday, September 9. If this law is adopted, we will have to assess its compliance with EU law, she announced.
– As for the media environment, there should be no political pressure here, and journalists should have the right conditions to do their job – she said.
The Polish license for TVN24 will expire in 11 days
TVN24 has been waiting for the license extension for 19 months. The application in this matter was submitted to the National Broadcasting Council in February 2020. Two votes were held in the National Broadcasting Council regarding the license for TVN24 on August 12 – No decisions were reached at that time.
READ MORE: TVN24 granted the license in accordance with the regulations. We present legal opinions
Disclosed opinion of the National Broadcasting Council on TVN from a few years ago. Lawyer: confirms the positions expressed by most lawyers
The National Broadcasting Council claims that the problem with extending the license for TVN24 lies in the “ownership situation” of the TVN group. In a statement, the management of the station recalled that in 2015 the National Broadcasting Council accepted the entry of American capital into TVN and stressed that “the company’s ownership structure is in line with the provisions of the Broadcasting Act”. It was added that “until applying for the extension of the license for the TVN24 program, the ownership structure of TVN did not raise any doubts.”
Since 2016 – under the same ownership conditions – KRRiT has already issued licenses for TVN24 BiS, TTV and TVN International West.