Proclamation by the Speaker of the Sejm


by Bronislaw Komorowski,
acting President of Poland

Bronislaw Komorowski, Speaker of the Sejm and acting President

Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear fellow countrymen,

Poland is in mourning, the plane crash has brought us great pain.

We have lost the President of the Republic Lech Kaczynski and his wife, Deputy Speakers of the Sejm and Senate, Ministers, Members of the Sejm and Senate belonging to all parties, generals and bishops. All died, fulfilling their public service to the common good, which is Poland. They perished on their way to the ceremony at Katyn. A place where, 70 years ago, thousands of Polish officers were killed because love for one’s country sometimes demands the highest sacrifice.

Today, we face our national tragedy together. There is no division between left and right. Differences of opinion, or religious belief, are irrelevant. Today we stand together, in the face of the great drama, the death of many people. Our thoughts are with the families of the deceased and for our orphaned nation.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear fellow countrymen, Article 131 of the Constitution requires the Speaker of the Sejm to ensure the continuity of the presidency, the head of the Polish state. As a result of these duties, which befell me today, I have proclaimed a week’s mourning throughout the whole country.

Let us all join together in mourning, both official and private, both as members of a community and as private individuals, as human beings, from the depths of a compassionate heart.

My other duty, within a two week deadline, it to set a date for the election of a president. Such an election must be held  no later than 60 days after the date is announced.I intend to do so after consulting with all parliamentary parties.

Today I give tribute to all those who died in the terrible crash near Smolensk. However, my thoughts and prayers and words of personal sympathy I address principally to the relatives of deceased, including the family of President Lech Kaczynski, to his mother, daughter and brother.

In these difficult days for our nation, let us all stand together.

(This translation is copyright. Permission is hereby given to reproduce part or all of the text, subject to including a reference to this source.)



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