Europe

Poland's judges halt sessions to protest planned changes

Judges in Poland have taken a 30-minute break from sessions in protest at government plans to reorganize a top judicial body, saying the changes would bring them under political influence, in violence of the constitution.

Many judges agree that the judiciary needs deep reform to make their work more efficient, but they say the government plan to reorganize the National Council of the Judiciary is going in the wrong direction.

The plan, currently being considered by lawmakers, calls for Parliament to appoint 15 of the council's 25 judges and for the current members, all appointed by judges, to be dismissed.

It is another step in the ruling Law and Justice party's efforts to take control of the justice system.

On Thursday, judges took breaks from sessions and held special meetings.