Smolensk crash in 2010: Kaczynski denounces a Russian attack

Poland’s ruling party leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski has accused Russia of being behind the Smolensk air disaster where his twin brother, President Lech Kaczynski, died in 2010, claiming to present evidence “very soon”.

The accident on April 10, 2010 left 96 people dead, including President Kaczynski and his wife, as well as several senior Polish officials, who were traveling to Russia to pay tribute to the victims of the Katyn massacre, near Smolensk, in 1940 .

The causes of the disaster have been the subject of heated political debate in Poland. The Conservatives accused the Liberal government of the day of negligence in preparing for the visit and of inadequacy in the investigation. Russia has blamed Poland entirely for the crash.

Speaking in front of several thousand people gathered in front of the presidential palace, Jaroslaw Kaczynski affirmed “to have a complete answer and verified by several sources, including abroad” on the causes of the disaster, without however detailing them. He assured that these elements “will be presented to the public very soon”.

He acknowledged, however, that “those who made the decision and those who carried it out, here in Poland, but especially in Russia”, have yet to be identified.

Asking “who benefits from the crime”, he referred to his brother’s policy against the interests of Moscow, both during the Russian-Georgian conflict and in the strategy of building gas pipelines avoiding Russia.

In the days following the disaster, some members of the ruling conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party accused Vladimir Putin, then Prime Minister, of being behind this “attack”.

Referring to Russian aggression in Ukraine, Mr. Kaczynski asserted that “post-communism in Russia is as criminal as communism”.

“I call on all of free Europe to a great mobilization in defense of Ukraine and freedom. This defense also requires definitively elucidating this affair (of Smolensk), including personal responsibilities, and bringing to justice all its perpetrators,” concluded Mr. Kaczynski.

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