23rd Mar 2018

Tusk summoned again to Polish court

Donald Tusk has been called to testify as a witness in an investigation of the 2010 Smolensk plane crash that killed the former Polish president, Lech Kaczynski, and 95 others onboard.

A spokeswoman for the Polish prosecutor said on Monday (15 May) that they had called the European Council president and the prime minister of Poland at the time of the plane crash for a hearing on 5 July.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • Polish prime minister Donald Tusk and president Lech Kaczynski attending a European Council in 2008. (Photo: The Council of the EU)

It is the second time that the prosecutor - who is directly controlled by Poland's Law and Justice government - has asked Tusk to appear before the court.

On 20 April, Tusk was quizzed for eight hours on a cooperation accord between Polish military counter-intelligence and Russia’s FSB spy service, in an enquiry that accused two generals of initiating the accord without Tusk's knowledge.

This time around, Poland's military prosecutor has been charged with a breach of duties over its failure to ask Russia for permission to carry out an autopsy of the air crash victims.

Tusk's summoning, however, could be seen as part of a larger effort to discredit the European Council president.

The leader of the ruling Law and Justice party, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, severely dislikes Tusk and claims that the plane crash was a Russian plot and that Tusk was somehow involved in the killing of his twin brother Lech.

Poland's defence minister, Antoni Macierewicz, said in March that he had filed another complaint, this time accusing Tusk of “diplomatic treason” over his handling of the Smolensk investigation.

Leaving the prosecutor's office after his first visit, Tusk told journalists that if he keeps getting summoned as a witness and it starts to interfere with his work at the European Council, he will use his diplomatic immunity to reject the invitations.

The number of people who believe that the Smolensk crash was not an accident has dropped since Law and Justice came to power.

Tusk's summoning also comes amid a clash between the Law and Justice government and the EU institutions over the party’s meddling in Poland’s judicial system.

EU ministers are gathering in Brussels on Tuesday for their first official discussion on the European Commission's probe into the breaches of rule of law in Poland.

Tusk dragged into 'political' spy probe

EU Council chief appeared as witness in a Russian spy probe in Warsaw amid increasingly toxic political climate in one of the Union's largest states.

Poland avoids talks on rule-of-law sanctions

EU ministers meeting in Brussels asked the Polish government to reverse its judicial reform, in their first discussion of the European Commission's probe.

Threat to collapse Fico coalition after journalist killing

Junior coalition partner Most-Hid wants Slovaks to vote for a new parliament, after the killing of a journalist. "If talks about early elections fail, Most-Hid will exit the ruling coalition," its leader Bela Bugar said.

German ministries were at war over CO2 car cuts

Foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel was not the only German government official trying to water down an EU draft bill on CO2 emissions from passenger vehicles last year. In fact, three Berlin ministries were contradicting each other behind the scenes.

News in Brief

  1. EU wants 'Paris' climate strategy within 13 months
  2. Workload of EU court remains high
  3. Spain's supreme court charges Catalan separatist leaders
  4. EU calls for 'permanent' exemption from US tariffs
  5. Summit backs guidelines for future EU-UK talks
  6. Macron support drops as public sector workers go on strike
  7. EU leaders condemn Turkey for illegal actions in Aegean Sea
  8. Parliament must publish 'trilogue' documents, court says

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. EUobserverStart a Career in EU Media. Apply Now to Become Our Next Sales Associate
  2. EUobserverHiring - Finance Officer With Accounting Degree or Experience - Apply Now!
  3. ECR GroupAn Opportunity to Help Shape a Better Future for Europe
  4. Counter BalanceControversial Turkish Azerbaijani Gas Pipeline Gets Major EU Loan
  5. World VisionSyria’s Children ‘At Risk of Never Fully Recovering', New Study Finds
  6. Macedonian Human Rights MovementMeets with US Congress Member to Denounce Anti-Macedonian Name Negotiations
  7. Martens CentreEuropean Defence Union: Time to Aim High?
  8. UNESDAWatch UNESDA’s President Toast Its 60th Anniversary Year
  9. AJC Transatlantic InstituteAJC Condemns MEP Ana Gomes’s Anti-Semitic Remark, Calls for Disciplinary Action
  10. EPSUEU Commissioners Deny 9.8 Million Workers Legal Minimum Standards on Information Rights
  11. ACCAAppropriate Risk Management is Crucial for Effective Strategic Leadership
  12. EPSUWill the Circular Economy be an Economy With no Workers?

Latest News

  1. Nordic states discuss targeted Russia sanctions
  2. Commission sticks to its line on Barroso case
  3. Germany and France promise new Russia sanctions
  4. EU rejects US trade 'gun to the head'
  5. Tariffs and Turkey will top This WEEK
  6. EU leaders roll over Brexit talks amid Trump and Russia fears
  7. Europe needs corporate tax reform - a digital tax isn't it
  8. EU data chiefs rally behind UK over Cambridge Analytica