Permanent Representation of the Republic of Poland to the Council of Europe Strasbourg



    It is with the deepest sense of grief
    that we learned,
    in the morning hours of April 10th 2010

    about one of the most terrible tragedies
    in the history of Poland.

    On the way to the commemoration ceremony marking the 70th anniversary
    of the Katyń Massacre

    the President of the Republic of Poland

    was killed in a plane crash

    along with the First Lady Maria Kaczyńska

    and many senior state officials, members
    of the Polish delegation and the plane crew. 

    The victims of the plane crash include eminent members of the Polish foreign service:

    Andrzej Kremer, Undersecretary of State 
     in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs


    Mariusz Handzlik, Undersecretary of State
    in the Chancellery of the President of Poland


    Stanisław Jerzy Komorowski, Undersecretary
    of State in the Ministry of National Defence


    Mariusz Kazana, Director of Diplomatic Protocol


    National mourning was declared by the Speaker of the Sejm Bronisław Komorowski.

    It will last from Saturday 10 April 6 p.m.
    until Sunday 18 April 12 p.m.

    We would like to offer our deepest sympathies
    to friends and families of the victims.



    " ... a bird flew by a cloud is sailing
    a leaf is falling mallow sprouting
    and there's silence on high
    and the Smolensk forest is steaming fog ..." 

    Zbigniew Herbert „Buttons"

    See also

    Official internet site of the President of Poland

    Internet site devoted to the history of the Katyń crime (available in 6 languages)

    List of victims of the plane crash

    May they rest in peace ... (Strasbourg, 11 April 2010)

    Homage by Strasbourg to those who have passed away

    The Council of Europe plunges into mourning

    A commemmoration ceremony by the Council of Europe (Strasbourg, 12 April 2010)

    Condolences and sympathy to the families of the vicitms and the people of Poland

    A Requiem Mass for all the victims of the Smolensk tragedy (Strasbourg, 18 April 2010) 

    Half-mast flags in Strasbourg on the day of the last farewell to the presidential couple (18 April 2010)

    Note verbale by the Permanent Representation of Poland to the Council of Europe


    Council of Europe deeply shocked
    by the Polish tragedy

    [11/04/2010 14:00:00] ''I am deeply shocked and sorrowed by the news of the tragic accident that caused the death of President Lech Kaczynski, his wife, the entire delegation accompanying him as well as the crew,'' said Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland, following the plane crash on 10 April. ''I would like to assure the Polish authorities and the Polish people that the Council of Europe stands beside Poland in these tragic hours,'' he added.

    The Chair of the Committee of Ministers, Micheline Calmy-Rey, Head of Switzerland's Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, addressed a message of condolences and solidarity to the Polish people. ''This tragedy plunges Poland as well as the whole of the Council of Europe into mourning,'' she said.

    Parliamentary Assembly President, Mevlüt çavusoglu, declared in a statement: ''I believe it is highly symbolic that the Polish President's last mission - attending a commemoration of the Katyn massacre - was about seeking historical justice and bringing about reconciliation.''

    Thorbjørn Jagland declared Monday 12 April as an official day of mourning at the Council of Europe. In memory of the President of the Republic of Poland, his wife and the other victims a Book of Condolences will be opened at the Permanent Representation of Poland to the Council of Europe.

    Statements of the CoE high officials 

    Letter of Condolence from Secretary General to Acting President of Poland

    Commemoration ceremony by the Council of Europe



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