Photo exhibition ‘Sprawiedliwość’
- Date: 16 June
- Location: Atrium City Hall the Hague
In the run-up to the Week of the Rule of Law, which is from May 30 to June 3, 2023, the Polish photo exhibition ‘Sprawiedliwość’ (Justice) with photos from photographer Piotr Wójcik is on display at the Atrium in The Hague from May 27 to June 16, 2023. This photo exhibition fits within The Hague, international city of Peace and Justice.
Renowned photographer Piotr Wójcik who works for Picture Doc Foundation, tells in his documentary photographic project ‘Justice’ the story of independent judges, prosecutors and lawyers, who are an important voice in the debate on the Polish rule of law. Wójcik portrayed representatives of these various legal professions who, because they do not give in to pressure from the authorities, face the consequences of their steadfastness on a daily basis. Come and see this inspiring exhibition to understand how citizens’ choices can shape the rule of law.
This exhibition is organized by the Judges for Judges Foundation in cooperation with the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights and is part of Just Peace The Hague.
Photographer Piotr Wójcik (1967): "Eight years after the government under the leadership of Law and Justice (PiS) began its destruction of the judiciary, it has become apparent that there is a group of lawyers in Poland, including judges, prosecutors, and attorneys, who consistently oppose their so-called “judicial reform”. Attacked on an almost daily basis via (PiS-backed) public television and the right-wing press, they have not allowed themselves to be intimidated or broken. The judges are trying to survive, despite being under pressure from the newly created Disciplinary Chamber of the Supreme Court, which has not been recognised as a ‘court’ by the Court of Justice of the European Union. Regardless of the most serious reservations about the legality of this chamber, it continues to mete out harsh disciplinary penalties to recalcitrant judges. In 2016 many independent prosecutors were reassigned to lower positions, and five years later independent prosecutors were being ‘sent out’ on secondments to locations as far as 400 km from their places of residence as a form of repression. I firmly believe that judicial independence, an independent prosecution service and the bar are the pillars of a democratic state under the rule of law. I have decided to document and present herein the biographies of those judges, prosecutors and attorneys who have had the courage to say “no” to the destruction of the legal system in Poland.
The JUSTICE project summarizes an eight-year struggle against the destruction of democracy in Poland and hopes to present the main actors within our Polish justice system. It is also a pretext to begin the debate on a new justice system.
We may be powerless, but not defenseless. I will keep repeating that it is worth defending values. And for that it is worth paying any price. As long as we fight, we will be the winners. The sun continues to shine despite being obscured behind clouds, and the day will always rise even after the longest night. Of this I am sure www.piotrwojcik.org.pl.
Foundation Judges for JudgesThe Dutch foundation Rechters voor Rechters (Judges for Judges) is an independent and non-political foundation set up by judges to support fellow judges abroad who have run into problems or risk problems on account of their professional practice. These problems are mostly related to (presumed) violation of their professional independence. The foundation also concerns itself with judges, who have been discharged for disturbing reasons, have been arrested and imprisoned, put under pressure, are threatened or even assassinated.
Atrium City Hall the Hague
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