P o l s k i e W i e ś c i

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Poland: six years since Smolensk crash

Poles commemorate today the 6th anniversary of the 2010 Smolensk plane crash that killed 96, including the President.

Poland: six years since Smolensk crash Read more>>>http://eurone.ws/10v6D2
Posted by euronews on Sunday, April 10, 2016

Lech Kaczynski and his wife were part of a high-profile delegation of 96 who died when their plane crashed on landing in Smolensk in April 2010.

They were travelling to the area to commemorate the Katyn massacre of Polish nationals during the Second World War.

The wreckage of the plane and its black boxes are stiil in Russia, where they were sent for examination.

A delegation of almost 200 people including victims' families and Polish officials attended memorial services held at the crash site in Smolensk, western Russia.

In Warsaw, the commemorative events were held from 6 a.m. to midnight. Prime Minister Beata Szydło and PiS leader Jarosław Kaczyński, the dead president’s twin brother, attended a memorial ceremony at the Powazki military cemetery. Observances were also held in front of the Presidential Palace, where Kaczynski laid a wreath 
and unveiled a memoral plaque to his late brother.

Commemorations gathered crowds on the streets of Warsaw. According to Warsaw authorities, events attracted 22,000 people. 

In the southern city of Cracow, President Andrzej Duda, a former aide to the late president, and the late president's daughter, Marta Kaczynska placed flowers at the tomb of Lech Kaczyński and his wife, Maria, in a crypt Wawel Cathedral.

President Duda called on for mutual forgiveness over all things that were said in the context of the Smolensk tragedy. He stressed that unity is what Poland currently needs.

Law and Justice party leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski unveils a plaque commemorating his twin brother, former Polish President Lech Kaczynski, as part of ceremonies marking the sixth anniversary of the Polish presidential plane crash in Smolensk, Russia.

However, Kaczynski, in a speech concluding Sunday commemorations in Warsaw, said that forgiveness is needed but should be preceded by confession and punishment. Kaczynski blamed the former government of Donald Tusk for going at great lengths to erase the Smolensk tragedy from memories of Poles. 

He said that there will soon be set up a special committee charged with a task of building a monument to Smolensk crash victims in Krakowskie Przedmiescie street, in the historic heart of Warsaw.

He also said that Poland needed to “establish the truth” about what happened six years ago referring to the recent decision of the PiS government to reopen investigation into Smolensk plane crash. Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz has appointed a new commission for the probe. 

Macierewicz has been one of the most prominent defenders of a conspiracy theory that the plane crash was a political assassination of the Polish president orchestrated by Russia, with the involvement of Germany and Polish moderates and that an explosive device was planted in the plane to bring it down. He has said that the three previous investigations - two Polish and one Russian, that blamed human error and bad weather were riddled with "mistakes" and "abnormalities”.

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