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PiS leader: monument will commemorate Smolensk crash

PR dla Zagranicy
Roberto Galea 11.12.2015 10:49
A monument to the victims of the 2010 Smolensk plane crash will be erected in front of the Presidential Palace in Warsaw, Law and Justice (PiS) party leader Jarosław Kaczyński has announced.
Jarosław Kaczyński (L, on footstool) speaking during the commemoration on Thursday. Photo: PAP/Radek Pietruszka Jarosław Kaczyński (L, on footstool) speaking during the commemoration on Thursday. Photo: PAP/Radek Pietruszka

During a speech in front of the palace on Thursday, Kaczyński, a former prime minister, said that a plaque will shortly be erected at the site to commemorate his twin brother Lech Kaczyński, who died along with 95 others as his plane was descending towards the Smolensk military airport in western Russia.

“There will be a monument dedicated to those who died in the crash, it will be a monument to President Lech Kaczyński. […] This is the will of President [Andrzej Duda],” Kaczyński said.

President Duda is a former PiS MP and was an aide to Lech Kaczyński.

‘Records of hypocrisy’

Poland’s Defence Minister has ordered a military guard of honour to accompany monthly commemorations of the crash that are held on the 10th of every month in Warsaw.

Thursday marked the first such commemoration, with a speech by Jarosław Kaczyński.

“We inform Poland that those who want to deceive Poles will not find support. On the other hand, those who want to help Poland, will be supported,” Kaczyński said.

“Records of hypocrisy have been broken by those who believe that democracy is under threat,” he added.

Opposition parties, particularly the recently defeated Civic Platform (PO) party and Nowoczesna (Modern), have slammed recent amendments to the law, particularly pertaining to the Constitutional Tribunal, as undemocratic, with some MPs calling them a “creeping coup d’état” by the governing Law and Justice, which won the 25 October general election and is the first party to govern alone since the fall of communism in Poland.


Hundreds of people gathered Thursday with crosses and pictures of the passengers who died in the 2010 presidential plane crash.

A journalist from the TVP public broadcaster reporting from the scene on Thursday was shoved and had his earpiece removed by supporters of Kaczyński, who said the reporter “had no right to be at the event”.

“The event as a whole proceeded rather quietly. There were no incidents. Only at the end, when I tried to broadcast from the scene, were there a few people who thought they knew what I wanted to say and how I wanted to say it. These were minor scuffles after the event had already ended,” said the TVP journalist, Radomir Wit. (rg/pk)

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