Today’s news round-up in Poland

Today’s news round-up in Poland Kalbar/TFN

Start your day with a summary of today’s top stories from Poland’s leading news sites. – A new, harsher penal code that has raised much controversy is coming into force on October 1, the newspaper Rzeczpospolita wrote. The new rules foresee up to 30 years imprisonment even for 14-year-olds in cases of the gravest crimes. The code will also a introduce life sentence with no parole option for especially serious crimes. Prof. Andrzej Zoll, a former ombudsman and president of the Constitutional Tribunal told Rzeczpospolita that "it's like going back to the 1969 code that was focused on repression only." – The recently-erected PLN 1.6 billion (EUR 345 million) fence that Poland put on its border with Belarus has proven ineffective, the newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza wrote, citing an internal report by the Border Guard. Between January and September 2023, migrants managed to cross the fence 30,000 times and nearly 13,000 migrants were able to get to Germany. Today, the fence is stopping no more than 60 percent of migrants, but the figure may still be low as those who have been stopped are trying again.

TVN24 – The Polish Bank Association has appealed to the government to apply the planned extension of the current mortgage moratorium only to people with financial problems, the news channel TVN24 reported. The programme helps borrowers pay off their mortgages amid high interest rates by allowing them to hold off their payments in certain months without consequences  The government has hinted that, as  one of its promises before the October 15 general election, the scheme may be prolonged into next year. – The state-owned TV channel TVP Info quoted a survey by the Social Changes pollster according to which 67 percent of Poles supported the government's decision that led to the construction of a 186-kilometre steel fence at Poland's border with Belarus, with 14 percent being opposed to it and 19 percent expressing indifference. 

Welcome to The First News weekly newsletter

Every Friday catch up on our editor’s top pick of news about Poland, including politics, business, life and culture. To receive your free email subscription, sign up today.