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Key ‘Smolensk crash’ recording to be released shortly: Defence Minister

A previously-unreleased recording from the cockpit of the plane which crashed in Smolensk, western Russia in 2010, will be released in September, shedding new light on the matter, Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz has said.

The recording will uncover the real course of events during the last few minutes of the fateful flight on 10 April 2010, when the Tupolev plane crashed killing all 96 people on board, including president Lech Kaczyński.

“True recordings of the Tupolev crew will be disclosed. These will reflect the actual course of events, not the [earlier] chaos from where it was impossible to pick out any of the words,” Macierewicz told the TVP broadcaster.

“The information is nothing new, but it will be presented in a scientific manner, [it will be] clear and indisputable. These is not new information, merely a summary of known data of the offence which the prosecutor’s office outlined a year ago,” Macierewicz told the TVP broadcaster.

Earlier this year, the Minister hinted at terrorism as a reason for the 2010 crash.

A commission looking into the cause of the crash is currently being led by Macierewicz, who has vouched to get to the bottom of who or what was responsible for the disaster.

A previous commission made up of a group of parliamentarians mainly from the then-opposition Law and Justice (PiS) party concluded in a 2014 report that the Tupolev 154 plane was brought down by an explosion.

This was in stark contrast to official Polish and Russian military reports on the causes of the tragedy, which happened in dense fog on approach to a military airfield lacking ground identification radar.

The former report cited a catalogue of errors on the Polish side, while also pointing to errors made by Russian staff at the control tower of Smolensk Military Airport. The Russian report placed all the blame on the Poles. The wreckage of the plane has never been handed over by Russia to Polish authorities.


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