Just 23% of Citizens Think Croatia’s Judiciary Is Independent

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, May 31, 2018 – Only 23 percent of those polled in Croatia have very good or pretty good opinion about the independence of courts and judges, according to a survey conducted by Eurobarometer about the perceived independence of the national justice systems in the EU.

The European Commission has recently published the 2018 EU Justice Scoreboard which gives a comparative overview of the independence, quality and efficiency of justice systems in the EU member states. It aims to assist national authorities to improve the effectiveness of their justice systems.

Compared to the previous editions, the 2018 Scoreboard further develops the different indicators. It strengthens in particular the section on judicial independence, which is relevant for assessing the rule of law. It looks in greater details at the Councils for the Judiciary, at the involvement of the executive and the parliament in appointments and dismissals of judges and court presidents, as well as at the organisation of prosecution services. It also presents, for the first time, data on the length of proceedings in all court instances.

The Justice Scoreboard is part of the toolbox used by the Commission to monitor the justice reforms of Member States, along with the European Semester, the Rule of Law Framework, the Cooperation and Verification Mechanisms and infringement proceedings.

Opinion about the independence of courts and judges varies widely across member states. In 17 countries, at least half rate the justice system in terms of the independence of courts and judges as good, with those in Denmark (87%), Finland (82%) and Austria (81%) the most likely to say this.

At the other end of the scale, 23% in Croatia, 29% in Slovakia and 30% in Bulgaria also rate the independence of courts and judges as good.

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