Polish military counterintelligence chief alleges negligence by former bosses

Kaczynski Plane Crash

Poland’s Military Counterintelligence Service (SKW) is to inform prosecutors about negligence by the service’s former bosses related to the 2010 crash of the Polish president’s plane in western Russia, the niezalezna.pl website has reported.

It said that the current head of the service, Piotr Bączek, had spoken about the case to Poland’s Telewizja Republika in his first television interview after taking up his post.

Polish “services completely ignored information about a possible threat to an airport in an EU country. The information came on the evening of April 9 and was completely ignored. The document landed on a shelf,” Bączek told Telewizja Republika.

niezalezna.pl reported that the Czech Republic’s SIRENE bureau at the time sent an urgent message indicating that the hijacking of a plane to Iraq was planned in the near future at an EU airport.

The message was sent on April 9 first to the Polish Government Security Centre, then relayed to a range of agencies and bodies, including the Internal Security Agency’s Counterterrorism Centre, the foreign ministry and to interior ministry officials, niezalezna.pl reported.

But the information did not reach the head of the National Security Bureau or President Lech Kaczyński, niezalezna.pl added.

The Polish presidential plane crashed on 10 April 2010 in Smolensk, western Russia. It was carrying 96 people on board. All died, including President Lech Kaczyński, as well as top military and government officials.

Poland’s former administration under the previous Civic Platform-led government also saw other irregularities taking place, niezalezna.pl said.

Bączek said: “Documents are still being found related to the Smolensk catastrophe in places where they should not be found. We are also investigating other irregularities.”

Poland’s Law and Justice (PiS) party, which came to power in late 2015, has reopened a probe into the Smolensk presidential plane crash.

Some PiS politicians have claimed the presidential plane was brought down by an explosion, and have challenged a report under Poland’s previous government which concluded the crash was an accident.

The PiS party is headed by Jarosław Kaczyński, twin brother of Polish President Lech Kaczyński, who died in the crash in Smolensk.

Poland’s Military Counterintelligence Service is a secret service responsible for the protection of the country against internal threats to national defence, security and the combat capacity of Poland’s armed forces.

A SIRENE (Supplementary Information Request at the National Entries) bureau is responsible for coordination of activities connected to Schengen Information System (SIS) alerts.

The Schengen Information System supports external border control and law enforcement cooperation in Schengen States.

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