Europe

Poland protests: Tens of thousands march again

  • 19 December 2015
  • From the section Europe
Media captionThe BBC's Adam Easton reports on a second weekend of protests in Poland

Tens of thousands of people have protested against Poland's new conservative government for the second weekend in a row, saying they are defending the constitution.

Demonstrations took place in Warsaw and around 20 other Polish cities.

The Law and Justice party won elections in October, and has since tried to appoint judges of its choice to the Constitutional Court.

Critics are concerned the government is trying to neuter the court.

Poland returns to Conservative roots

Image copyright EPA
Image caption Protesters rallied in front of the parliament in Warsaw
Image copyright EPA
Image caption There were also substantial demonstrations in provincial cities such as Wroclaw
Image copyright EPA
Image caption Bydgoszcz in northern Poland also saw people take to the streets
Image copyright EPA
Image caption Residents of Bydgoszcz also took part in a counter-demonstration in support of the president

The protests were organised by a group called the Committee for the Defence of Democracy.

Opponents of the government are unhappy at its move to replace five out of the 15 judges on the country's highest judicial body - which has the power to block legislation.

MPs have accused Law and Justice of carrying out a "creeping coup d'etat".

The party now controls both houses of parliament and the presidency.

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