Poland's Constitutional Tribunal ruled Thursday that three out of five judges appointed to the court by the previous, liberal ruling party were legally nominated, throwing into chaos the new conservative ruling party's attempts to replace them with its own choices.

The ruling came only hours after President Andrzej Duda confirmed four new judges for the country's special court. He was to confirm a fifth next week.

The issue has led to an escalating political dispute, with the Law and Justice party, in power since last month, and the previously ruling Civic Platform accusing each other of acting illegally.

Duda also won the presidency on a Law and Justice ticket, giving the party wide power.

- AP