According to politicsezine.com, Poland borders six countries: Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania. To the north lies the Baltic Sea and to the south is the Carpathian Mountains. The country is bordered by Germany to the west and is divided by a 2,000-kilometer land border. This border has been a source of tension between Poland and Germany in recent years due to its history of conflict. To the east lies Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania with a combined land border of 1,500 kilometres. The northern border of Poland is largely mountainous with the Carpathian Mountains being one of Europe’s oldest mountain ranges. The highest peak in Poland is Rysy at 2,499 metres above sea level. To the south are two mountain ranges; Sudetes and Beskids which makes up part of Poland’s southern border with Czech Republic and Slovakia respectively. The central region of Poland features lowlands with some hills while further east lies flat plains that make up much of Ukraine’s landscape.
Government of Poland
According to Programingplease, the Government of Poland is a democratic, unitary state comprised of a bicameral parliament, an executive branch headed by the Prime Minister, and a judicial branch. The President is the head of state and is elected by direct popular vote for a five-year term. The Prime Minister is the head of government and is appointed by the President with approval from the lower house of parliament. The government consists of an upper house (Senate) and lower house (Sejm).
The Sejm is composed of 460 members elected to four-year terms while the Senate consists of 100 members elected to four-year terms. Both chambers pass laws, approve budgets, ratify international agreements, provide oversight for government activities and confirm presidential appointments. Laws are proposed by either chamber or by the government itself.
The executive branch consists of ministries responsible for various areas such as defense, finance, education, health care and foreign affairs; each led by a minister appointed by the Prime Minister with approval from both chambers. The Prime Minister also appoints deputies to assist in managing day-to-day operations within each ministry.
The judicial branch is composed of courts at three levels: local or regional courts; appeals courts; and Supreme Court. Judges are appointed for life terms which can only be terminated through impeachment or death. The Supreme Court has both judicial review power which allows it to declare laws unconstitutional as well as administrative powers which allow it to oversee all other aspects of the court system including interpretation of laws and regulations passed by parliament or ministries.
Recent Heads of Government of Poland
The current Prime Minister of Poland is Mateusz Morawiecki, who was appointed to the office on 11 December 2017. Morawiecki is a member of the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party and has held various positions within the government since 2015. Prior to his appointment as Prime Minister, he served as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development.
Morawiecki has been a strong advocate for welfare reforms in Poland and has sought to improve social security benefits for low-income families. He has also pushed for increased investment in infrastructure projects, such as roads and railways, and the development of renewable energy sources. In addition, the Prime Minister has emphasized the importance of strengthening ties with other European countries and increasing Polish exports abroad. Under his leadership, Poland has taken a more active role in international affairs, including playing a key role in negotiations on Brexit.
Major Political Parties in Poland
The major political parties in Poland are the Law and Justice (PiS) party, Civic Platform (PO), Democratic Left Alliance (SLD), Kukiz’15, and the Polish People’s Party (PSL). The Law and Justice party has been in power since 2015, after defeating the Civic Platform in parliamentary elections. They are a socially conservative populist party led by former Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski. PiS seeks to promote traditional values such as patriotism, Catholicism, and respect for authority. They have enacted controversial laws such as restrictions on abortion and same-sex couples adopting children.
The Civic Platform is a center-right party that was in power from 2007 to 2015. Led by former Prime Minister Donald Tusk, the PO is pro-business and favors free market economics. They have been critical of PiS policies, particularly those that restrict civil rights.
The Democratic Left Alliance is a left-wing party that has traditionally been supported by labor unions and other progressive groups. Their platform focuses on social justice issues such as healthcare reform, improving working conditions, and protecting the environment. The SLD also strongly opposes PiS policies which they view as authoritarian in nature.
Kukiz’15 is an anti-establishment populist movement led by musician Pawel Kukiz which seeks to end corruption within the government and promote direct democracy through referendums. Lastly, the Polish People’s Party is a centrist agrarian party that supports rural communities through economic policies such as subsidies for farmers and increased government investment in infrastructure projects.