Top Polish Politician: European Union in Greatest Ever Crisis

Polish farright activists hold anti-EU banner as they take part in demonstration against accepting over 2000 immigrants to Poland, Warsaw on a July 25, 2015. AFP PHOTO / WOJTEK RADWANSKI (Photo credit should read WOJTEK RADWANSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

Deputy speaker of the Polish parliament and member of the Law and Justice Party (PiS) Ryszard Terlecki has claimed that the European Union is facing its greatest crisis as divisions between East and West continue to grow.

“We say very firmly: we do not want a two-speed union, we do not want to return to the time of the division of Europe, and if Germany, France, the strongest EU players, recognise that this division is the most convenient for them and push it through, we say: we will mobilise in Eastern and Central Europe,” Terlecki told the 11th Europe-Ukraine Forum in Jasionka, Poland, this week.

The deputy speaker added that former Communist states were “very attached to their sovereignty”, and added: “They value the values that in Western Europe are rejected today by the liberal establishment.”

One of those values, which has been rigorously defended in Poland and by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in Hungary, has been traditional Christian values.

Terlecki argued that in “our part of Europe we respect religion, and in Western Europe, this religion is ignored or pushed out of the public space”.

“The dramatic crisis that the EU establishment seems to me is not fully aware of: it is one of the most important EU countries that is leaving it and that is a huge failure of the Union,” he said on the subject of Brexit, adding that member states should be asking: “What is the purpose of the Union now?”

Since the 2015 migrant crisis, the European Union has seen a massive rise in eurosceptic populist parties, most recently in Italy where anti-establishment parties won the majority of the vote.

The EU, through its migrant quotas system, also came into conflict with Central European states like Poland and Hungary which flatly rejected the quota system. Following last October’s national election in Austria, where a populist-conservative coalition came to power, they were joined by new Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz who also spoke out in opposition to the quotas.

 Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at) 


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