Poland's ruling coalition to lose majority

Poland's ruling coalition is facing the loss of its parliamentary majority after three MPs quit Law and Justice (PiS), the coalition’s dominant party.

The three defectors, Zbigniew Girzyński, Małgorzata Janowska and Arkadiusz Czartoryski, left PiS citing disappointment with the party’s new mining and energy policy.

They also had problems with the Polish New Deal, the government’s flagship investment and reform programme, according to their comments quoted by the news web service Onet.

The three said they would form their own grouping in parliament called Polish Choice.

Although the rebels will remain ideologically close to PiS their departure could undermine government efforts to get its policies through parliament.

The United Right is now left with 229 seats in the lower house, two seats short of an outright majority, and dependent on the support of the four MPs from the Kukiz'15 grouping with which PiS recently signed a cooperation deal.

Reacting to the loss, Mateusz Morawiecki, the prime minister, said he hoped he could rely on the three for their "further cooperation".