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Prosecutors hear Tusk acted against Polish interests after Smolensk disaster

PR dla Zagranicy
Victoria Bieniek 21.03.2017 12:15
Poland’s defence minister has informed the prosecutor’s office, claiming that former Prime Minister Donald Tusk acted against the country's interests following the 2010 Smolensk disaster, a government spokesman has said.
The site of the Polish presidential plane crash in 2010. Photo: Wikimedia CommonsThe site of the Polish presidential plane crash in 2010. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The spokesman said that Tusk is alleged to have acted to Poland’s detriment by applying an annex to the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation in a probe into the 2010 presidential plane crash in Smolensk, in western Russia, and that a Polish investigation was limited as a result.

“There was no access to evidence, to the wreck” of the plane, the spokesman said, adding that it was also impossible to challenge an official Russian report into the crash.

He said that the disaster could have been investigated more thoroughly under a 1993 agreement between Poland and Russia.

The PAP news agency reported that Polish Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz had accused Tusk of suspected “diplomatic treason”.

'Scandalous' tender

Meanwhile, Macierewicz told the Gazeta Polska weekly that Tusk should be held accountable for his role relating to the 2010 plane crash, which killed the country’s president and 95 others.

He told the weekly that the former PM signed an “illegal” deal for repairs to the plane.

According to the weekly, Poland’s Military Counterintelligence Service has informed the prosecutor’s office of suspicions that a crime was committed during a tender procedure for repairs to a presidential Tupolev-model plane.

Macierewicz told the weekly that Tusk signed an "illegal" deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin that was "detrimental to Poland" and should therefore "be held accountable" by a court.

“The tender was carried out in a scandalous way,” Macierewicz told the weekly, adding that the winning bidder, Poland-based Polit Elektronik, had agreed months ahead of the deal being finalised that plane manufacturer and servicer Aviakor – a subsidiary of Moscow-based industrial conglomerate Basic Element – would repair the Polish presidential plane at its plant in Russia.

Tupolevs were made in Russia.

“To put it briefly, from the beginning to the end [the tender] had been set up, and Vladimir Putin’s friend Oleg Deripaska [the owner of Basic Element] knew from the get-go that his company would be repairing the Polish president’s plane,” Macierewicz was quoted by the weekly as saying.

He added that Polish prosecutors have already been informed of Tusk’s role.

On 10 April 2010, a Polish presidential Tupolev crashed on landing at a military airport in Smolensk, in western Russia, killing President Lech Kaczyński, his wife Maria, and 94 others.

Official reports by the Russian authorities and Poland’s previous government concluded the crash was an accident. The Polish report 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. The Russian report placed all the blame on the Poles.

However, a probe into the crash has been reopened by the conservative Law and Justice (PiS) government – headed by the late President Lech Kaczyński’s twin brother – which swept into power in October 2015.

PiS MPs concluded in 2014 that the plane had been brought down by an explosion. (vb/pk)

Source: IAR

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