Visa scandal in Poland: PiS down for the count?
A month before the parliamentary elections in Poland, a visa scandal is causing a stir. While in office, a deputy foreign minister at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs who has since been dismissed allegedly facilitated the granting of multiple-entry Schengen visas to unauthorised persons in exchange for money. Media reports talk of between several hundred and several hundred thousand such cases. Poland discusses whether the scandal will jeopardise the re-election of the anti-immigration PiS party.
Poland now truly an Eldorado for migrants
The scandal has exposed the hypocrisy of the PiS, which is campaigning using anti-immigration slogans, Newsweek Polska writes:
“While stoking fears of foreign violence and rape, the government has quietly - quite legally and yet illegally - allowed hundreds of thousands of immigrants into Poland. Let's face it: we have become an immigration El Dorado among Western countries, and the trade in Polish work permits and visas is booming. ... Poland leads the EU when it comes to granting first-time residence permits to foreigners - over 700,000 in 2022, including just over 150,000 for immigrants from outside Ukraine and Belarus.”
Tusk is no more believable
Interia says the PiS won't lose the elections over the scandal:
“Why won't there be a breakthrough? Yes, the PiS now seems a little more ambiguous in its warnings about a wave of immigration. But Tusk is also being forced to wear a different mask. Part of his intellectual and social base believes that turning a person away at Poland's borders is at least some kind of crime and certainly a violation of human rights. [The Tusk-supporting liberal electoral alliance] Koalicja Obywatelska, meanwhile, publishes videos in which it stirs up fear of people of colour, for which some of its own supporters have denounced Tusk. So will PiS voters see him as a credible herald of the threat?”