Polish police arrested two politicians convicted of abuse of energy on Tuesday in a dramatic escalation of the confrontation between the brand new pro-EU authorities and the outgoing ultra-conservative Regulation and Justice (PiS) celebration.
One of many two males arrested by the Polish Police, the previous Polish Inside Minister, Mariusz Kaminski, He mentioned he had gone on starvation strike as a “political prisoner” on Wednesday. The opposite man arrested was Kaminski’s former deputy, Maciej Wasik.
The 2 politicians convicted of abuse of energy had taken refuge for hours within the palace of President Andrzej Duda, in a dramatic escalation of the confrontation between the brand new authorities and the earlier one. Warsaw police gave no particulars, saying solely that the arrest was made “in accordance with the courtroom order.”
The developments intensified a dispute between the brand new authorities, led by Prime Minister Donald Tusk, and the conservative Regulation and Justice celebration that dominated Poland for eight years till final month, following its defeat in October’s common election.
Duda is carefully aligned with Regulation and Justice and makes it clear that he’ll oppose Tusk’s agenda. Duda’s second and last time period will run till mid-2025.
Tusk, who has promised restore democratic norms in Polandaccused the president of accepting the actions of Regulation and Justice to create chaos and instability after his electoral defeat, saying that Duda “this spectacle should cease, it’s resulting in a really harmful state of affairs”. state of affairs.”
The prime minister claimed that the president was obstructing justice by harboring the wished males. At a information convention, he learn a piece of the penal code that he mentioned Duda had violated, which carries a jail sentence of three months to 5 years. “I simply need the president to concentrate on how his political buddies have misled him,” Tusk mentioned.
The dispute facilities on two senior members of Regulation and Justice, former Inside Minister Mariusz Kaminski and his former deputy Maciej Wasik, who briefly left the palace to talk to journalists hours earlier than their arrest. “We’re not hiding,” Kaminski mentioned. “We’re at the moment with the President of the Republic of Poland till evil loses.”
Kaminski and Wasik have been convicted of abuse of energy for actions taken in 2007, once they served in a earlier Authorities led by Regulation and Justice. Duda pardoned them in 2015, though authorized consultants argued that such pardons are reserved for circumstances which have gone by all appeals.
In June, Poland’s Supreme Court docket annulled the pardons and ordered a brand new trial. Kaminski and Wasik have been sentenced in December to 2 years in jail. On Monday, a courtroom issued orders for police to arrest them and take them to jail. They insist they’re harmless and Duda maintains that the pardons are nonetheless legitimate.
On Tuesday, Duda invited Kaminski and Wasik to his palace for a ceremony through which he named two officers who had labored for them as his new advisers. His workplace posted a photograph of him posing with the 4 of them.
Kaminski is a former head of the Central Anti-Corruption Bureau who was convicted together with Wasik and two others of abuse of energy to create a provocation in a sting operation that sought to incriminate their targets. That scandal contributed to the collapse of the primary Regulation and Justice authorities in 2007.
Tusk’s allies welcomed the arrests and mentioned they marked a return to holding officers accountable. “Let this be a warning to politicians of the following technology,” Overseas Minister Radek Sikorski posted on social media.
The previous prime minister was one of many Regulation and Justice officers who expressed outrage and described these detained as “political prisoners.”