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 Polish president dies in plane crash

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Master Cthulhu
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PostSubject: Polish president dies in plane crash   Sat Apr 10, 2010 10:09 am

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2010/04/10/bloomberg1376-L0NUKA07SXKX-1.DTL

April 10 (Bloomberg) -- Polish President Lech Kaczynski and central bank Governor Slawomir Skrzypek were killed today when their plane crashed in western Russia, where they were to mark the 70th anniversary of a massacre of Polish officers.

The 60 year-old president's wife, Maria, and several Polish officials also died in the crash, which happened as the aircraft was on approach for landing in Smolensk, Foreign Ministry spokesman Piotr Paszkowski said in a phone interview. The death toll stands at 96, the Associated Press said, citing Russia's Emergency Ministry. The passenger list, which shows 88 people were on board, also includes the Army Chief of Staff Franciszek Gagor.

Under Poland's constitution the duties of the president will be taken over by the speaker of the lower house of parliament, Bronislaw Komorowski. He has 14 days to announce a presidential election, which must be held within two months. Komorowski was the candidate of Prime Minister Donald Tusk's Civic Platform party and polls show he was poised to defeat Kaczynski in presidential elections, originally scheduled for the second half of the year.

"In the face of this tragedy we are all together, there are no divisions no differences," Komorowski said in parliament.

Piotr Wiesiolek, a deputy governor of the central bank, will temporarily assume the governorship. The bank's operations won't be disrupted by Skrzypek's death, it said in an e-mailed statement.

Poles Praying

The government of the largest of the 10 former communist nations to join the European Union is holding an emergency cabinet meeting. The country will hold a week of national mourning, Komorowski said in comments broadcast by TVP INFO.

TVN24 television showed pictures of Poles laying flowers and praying in front of the presidential palace in Warsaw as they began to mourn the deaths. Churches around the country announced services to commemorate the dead.

Executive power under Poland's constitution is concentrated in the hands of the prime minister and the government. The president has the power to veto legislation and make certain appointments, including generals, judges, ambassadors and the governor of the central bank. Kaczynski's other responsibilities as head of state were mostly ceremonial.

The delegation was to attend the commemoration of thousands of Poles killed in the spring of 1940 by Soviet forces under Josef Stalin at Katyn. The death of Polish Prime Minister Wladyslaw Sikorski at Gilbraltar in 1943 is the last time Poland lost a national leader in a plane crash.

Fourth Attempt

The plane clipped the tree line at about 10:50 a.m. Moscow time and broke in two as the pilot attempted a fourth landing amid heavy fog at a military airport near Smolensk, Russia, Rossiya-24 said, citing officials at the scene. Newswire RIA quoted an unnamed Russian security official as saying pilot error was a factor in the accident.

Rossiya-24 TV showed live footage of rescue workers attempting to extinguish pockets of fire among the wreckage almost two hours later at the airport, about 320 kilometers (200 miles) west of Moscow.

"The plane was landing in bad visibility," Andrei Yevseyenkov, press secretary of the Smolensk region governor told Rossiya-24. "Dispatchers at Severny military airport suggested that the plane land in Minsk (about 200 kilometers away) but the pilots took their own landing decision."

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev dispatched Emergency Ministry Sergei Shoigu to the site of the crash and formed a special commission headed by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to investigate the cause.

Investigtation

The Investigative Committee of the Prosecutor General's Office is looking into whether bad weather, human error, a technical malfunction or other reasons caused the crash, according to a statement on the committee's Web Site. A criminal case has been initiated, it said.

Ryszard Kaczorowski, the last Polish president in exile during World War II, Janusz Kurtyka, the head of the Institute of National Remembrance, which investigates Nazi and Soviet crimes against Poles, and the Army chief of staff Franciszek Gagor were to be on the plane, according to a list of passengers posted on the government's website.

The list also includes deputy parliamentary speaker Jerzy Smajdzinski, who was the presidential candidate of the opposition Left Democratic Alliance. That means the crash killed the presidential candidates of two of Poland's three largest parties. Kaczynski had already won the endorsement of the opposition Law and Justice party. He was to officially declare his candidacy in May.

Condolences

Medvedev expressed condolences over the president's death, and ordered "a thorough investigation in full and closest cooperation with the Polish side," a statement on the Kremlin's Web Site said.

Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini expressed the government's "deep sorrow" for the crash, according to a statement sent via e-mail. 'The whole world will be saddened and shocked as a result of this tragic death," Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown said in a statement. In a message sent to Tusk and distributed by e-mail German Chancellor Angela Merkel said her country stood "with sympathy and solidarity on" Poland's side "in this difficult hour."
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PostSubject: Re: Polish president dies in plane crash   Sat Apr 10, 2010 3:28 pm

Odd occurrence

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PostSubject: Re: Polish president dies in plane crash   Tue Apr 13, 2010 12:12 pm

Shits fucked up, yo.

But seriously that is really fucked up, I couldn't even imagine being a Polish citizen right now.
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PostSubject: Re: Polish president dies in plane crash   Tue May 18, 2010 8:51 pm

blackstar wrote:
I couldn't even imagine being a Polish citizen right now.
right now? when has it ever been a good time to be polish?
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PostSubject: Re: Polish president dies in plane crash   Tue May 18, 2010 8:53 pm

Gravy Gulper wrote:
blackstar wrote:
I couldn't even imagine being a Polish citizen right now.
right now? when has it ever been a good time to be polish?
If it didn't say that I was from Scotland, I'd be trying to fuck with you right now saying I'm Polish. LOL
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PostSubject: Re: Polish president dies in plane crash   Tue May 18, 2010 10:39 pm

Gravy Gulper wrote:
blackstar wrote:
I couldn't even imagine being a Polish citizen right now.
right now? when has it ever been a good time to be polish?

true that.
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PostSubject: Re: Polish president dies in plane crash   Tue May 18, 2010 11:35 pm

I would be like FUCK.


But srsly, that sucks so bad.
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PostSubject: Re: Polish president dies in plane crash   Tue May 18, 2010 11:38 pm

Gravy Gulper wrote:
blackstar wrote:
I couldn't even imagine being a Polish citizen right now.
right now? when has it ever been a good time to be polish?

Back in WW2. Wait a minute, that's not right....
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