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Polish prosecutors informed by military counterintelligence over Smolensk

PR dla Zagranicy
Victoria Bieniek 18.04.2017 11:47
Information about Poland's Military Counterintelligence Service (SKW) activities relating to the organisation of the ill-fated 2010 presidential flight to Smolensk has been handed over to prosecutors, a spokeswoman for the National Prosecutor’s Office has confirmed.
Piotr Bączek. Photo: polskieradio.plPiotr Bączek. Photo: polskieradio.pl

The head of the SKW Piotr Bączek on Tuesday told Polish Radio that the information was given to the team of prosecutors probing the crash.

Both Bączek and the prosecution’s spokeswoman declined to reveal what information was submitted, saying that it was “top secret”.

However, Bączek told Polish Radio that before the 10 April, 2010, plane crash in Smolensk, western Russia, cooperation between Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) and the SWK under its previous leadership was of an official nature, but later became "a service within an alliance agreement”.

Earlier media reports suggested that the agencies struck a deal in April 2010 regarding threats faced by either of the sides.

The FSB is Russia’s principal security agency and the main successor agency to the KGB.

The head of the European Commission, Donald Tusk, who was Poland’s Prime Minister in 2010, will on Wednesday be questioned by prosecutors as a witness as they investigate the alleged deal.

According to Bączek, former Defence Minister Bogdan Klich earlier said he knew nothing of a partnership deal between the SKW and FSB.

“This is a very interesting statement because under the rules [a partnership between the SKW and FSB] can only be struck after being appraised by the defence minister,” he said.

“If the partnership was accepted by Tusk, and Klich did not know about it, that raises the question of why he was left out,” Bączek said.

In April 2010, the Polish presidential plane crashed while trying to land in fog in Russia, killing then-President Lech Kaczyński and the 95 others on board.

Poland’s Law and Justice (PiS) party, which came to power in late 2015, has reopened a probe into the disaster.

PiS has long challenged an official report into the crash issued by the previous Polish government which cited a catalogue of errors on the Polish side, while also pointing to errors made by Russian staff at the control tower of Smolensk Military Airport.

A Russian report placed all the blame on the Poles.

The commission behind the new, ongoing investigation recently said the plane was probably destroyed by a mid-air explosion, adding that Russian air traffic controllers deliberately misled Polish pilots about their location as the presidential plane was approaching the runway of the Smolensk military airport in 2010.


Source: Polskie Radio 24, PAP

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