From 19 to 21 September, a delegation of ten MEPs from the EP’s spyware inquiry committee will be in Warsaw to hear from victims of spyware, local politicians, and other experts.

During their visit, MEPs will meet with members of the Polish Senate’s extraordinary committee on Pegasus, members of the Sejm, and representatives of the Supreme Audit Office and the Ombudsman’s office. They will also speak to judges to learn about judicial oversight of surveillance, hear from experts on the country’s security services, meet with victims of spyware to hear their testimonials, and sit down with journalists, NGO personnel and other experts.

MEPs also wanted to meet with representatives of the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Justice, but these requests were declined, prompting political groups to issue on September 15 a critical joint statement.

Spyware inquiry: Statement of Committee Coordinators on the Polish authorities’ refusal to cooperate
“We strongly condemn the fact that the Polish government has refused to collaborate with the Inquiry Committee by declining the invitation to the hearing and refusing to meet with the fact-finding mission next week. We believe that such meetings would give the Government opportunity to respond to reports about illegal use of intrusive surveillance against persons deemed as political opponents. Nevertheless, the Committee will continue to work diligently and transparently in uncovering abusive spyware practices in the European Union, even if a Member State government fails to comply with its duty to cooperate with an EP committee of inquiry. We welcome the cooperation of many other actors including victims, experts and civil society representatives, who are present today, and we look forward to more meetings next week.”

To prepare for the visit, the committee organised a hearing with Polish guest experts and victims of spyware.

Members participating in the delegation: Jeroen LENAERS (EPP, NL – Chair of the PEGA Committee and Head of the Delegation), Sophia IN’T VELD (Renew, NL – Rapporteur of the PEGA Committee), Vladimír BILČÍK (EPP, SK), Bartosz ARŁUKOWICZ (EPP, PO), Juan Ignacio ZOIDO ÁLVAREZ (EPP, ES), Katarina BARLEY (S&D, DE), Łukasz KOHUT (S&D, PO), Róża THUN UND HOHENSTEIN (Renew, PO), Dominik TARCZYŃSKI (ECR, PO), Marcel KOLAJA (Greens, CZ).

To wrap up the visit, there will be a press conference at the Marriott Hotel in Warsaw on Wednesday 21 September, 13.00 CEST. A streaming link can be found here.