2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-27 05:39
Can top German politicians be forced to ban diesel vehicles with imprisonment? This will be the subject of the ECJ today.
The hearing of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) will take place from 2.30 p.m. in Luxembourg. An oral hearing is about a request from the Bavarian Administrative Court to the highest EU judges as to whether compulsory detention is possible or even necessary under EU law.
The aim of the detention should be to force the Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) to implement a seven-year-old judgment.
Bavaria rejected driving bans
Following a lawsuit from Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH), the Munich Administrative Court ordered the Free State of Bavaria to draw up a new clean air plan in 2012. It should also provide for driving bans for diesel cars on certain particularly polluted roads. However, the Bavarian government had always rejected driving bans. Umwelthilfe had therefore obtained fines against the government in order to induce them to implement the judgment.
The so-called request for a preliminary ruling from the Administrative Court states that the penalty payments had no effect because they would have to be paid by the Bavarian state into the Bavarian state treasury - i.e. only transferred within the budget.
Penalty not allowed
In its question to the European Court of Justice, the Bavarian Administrative Court points out that the Federal Constitutional Court believes that German law does not provide for a fine against public officials. However, according to a 2014 ECJ ruling, the courts in EU countries are obliged to “adopt every necessary measure” to ensure compliance with the European Air Quality Directive. In addition, the “non-compliance with final decisions by public authorities” is incompatible with EU law.
Deutsche Umwelthilfe is not only demanding compulsory detention from the Administrative Court against the Bavarian Prime Minister Söder and high officials from the responsible ministries.
In a similar process, she also demands imprisonment against the Baden-Württemberg Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann (Greens). The judgment of the ECJ, which is not expected for a few weeks or months, is also important for this procedure. The large chamber with 15 judges only questioned those involved in the proceedings on Tuesday. (dpa)
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