Wednesday, November 14, 2018
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< view full issue: Is European justice in crisis?
Carmen P. Flores

​Crisis in the EU due to the judicial disagreements of the member countries?

Editor of TEJ. Journalist

The conception of the EU has not been an easy job over these years. The individual interests of the member countries, plus the existence of a two-speed Europe, have been increasing the suspicions between the leading countries and those treated as second class, however much its authorities deny this undeniable reality.


Justicia Europa


In this last year, the presence of Catalonian politicians fleeing from justice and installed in member countries of the EU has generated unprecedented political and judicial unrest, due to the attitude of the Belgian and German judges who applied their laws, without taking into account the Spanish ones, the country in which they have to be judged, using their own legislation. Have the justice of those countries been passed over in their attributions?


Has the Spanish judges been undermined? What role has the high European Court of Justice played?


The construction of a common judicial area, enunciated in the Treaty of Lisbon, represented an significant step in judicial cooperation, as a model for the mutual recognition of judicial resolutions. It opened a new opportunity for collaboration, which at present time raises reasonable doubts that this is indeed so. Has the collaboration been broken by this case? Some say that yes, others say that it would be prudent to wait.


The disagreements, now judicial, have returned to the front line of some of the member countries, which have argued that the separation of powers and the freedom of their honourships in making decisions, -very debatable indeed-, with interference and disavowal of Judge Llarena judgements. Have they exceeded their interpretations, and in doing so, given wings to the escaped? Experts say that indeed this is so... These are circumstances that leads us to contemplate if we need to create, in actual fact, a common European justice area, where what is decided in one member country is really respected by the rest, without interference, and of course defending people's rights


Experts believe that this situation is still far from being so after the resolutions issued by Belgian and German courts that have uncovered a can of worms.


Once again, we have stumbled upon a very sensitive issue that not only affects Spain, but also a situation that could occur in any one of the 28 member countries, such as France, the United Kingdom, and Belgium itself. Would these countries act in the same way? Or is it simply something that only happens in the southern Europe countries? This is not a minor issue. Can a crisis originate within the EU, or will it be only simply a minor squall whose consequences have yet to be evaluated. Perhaps this problem serves to consider the true role of the institutions of the old continent, now that it is on the verge of new European Parliament elections, where Eurosceptics and populists of the Far Right are waiting to obtain more representation alerted by the drizzling rain that is falling from the rebirth of the Far Right and nationalism. It would not be good news if this happened, but it cannot be ruled out.


European justice is not an easy topic to talk about, and particularly about some of its decisions. 


Perhaps for this reason it is good to know what judges, prosecutors, teachers and scholars think, who have not shied away from the issue, but rather, have contributed their knowledge and criteria and given a professional vision of the situation. This is much appreciated, since not everyone wants to talk about it, preferring to avoid the issue.

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