Makeup of new Polish government signals continuity

International

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced the composition of his new Cabinet on Friday following an election last month — and it looks a lot like his outgoing government.

Those keeping their jobs include Morawiecki himself and Piotr Glinski, who remains as deputy prime minister and culture minister.

Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz will also retain his position. However the key European affairs division will be separated from the Foreign Ministry and shifted to the prime minister’s office. That area will be overseen by Konrad Szymanski, who has been minister for European affairs since 2015.

Morawiecki announced the decisions following a meeting of top members of the ruling conservative Law and Justice party.

Morawiecki and party leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski, who stood with him, described it as a government of continuation. During its last term, the party supported conservative social values and social spending policies that broke with the austerity of earlier post-communist governments.

The party was also often at odds with the European Union over a judicial overhaul that the EU perceived as violating the rule of law.

Law and Justice won nearly 44% of the vote in October elections, which translates to a small majority of seats in the lower house. The newly elected parliament will hold its first sitting on Tuesday.

Morawiecki and his new Cabinet must face a confidence vote but can be expected to pass it easily thanks to the party’s majority in the lower house.

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