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Civic Nation Unity in Deversity

Anti-Xenophobic Rhetoric

Anti-Xenophobic Rhetoric President of Poland (since August 6, 2015) Andrzej Duda.

A number of statements of Polish politicians against xenophobia may be noted. Polish authorities have strongly condemned the actions of Polish fans at a football game with the Lithuanian team in August 2013, when Polish fans stretched a giant banner with the inscription “Lithuanian cad, kneel before the Polish Pan” .

On October 29, 2014, presidents of Poland and Israel attended an opening ceremony for a permanent exposition in the Museum of Polish Jews. President of Poland Bronislaw Komorowski said that the Museum is not only a tribute to the past, but also an investment into the future of Polish-Israeli relations. “I am happy that we found so many common topics of conversation regarding strengthening relations between Poland and Israel,” he noted. Minister of Internal Affairs Bartlomiej Sienkiewicz condemned the desecration of the General Chernyakhovsky memorial. He said that the damage has been eliminated, but the matter is still under investigation. The shattered plaque cannot be restored, but the city authorities are making a replacement .

The President of the Republic of Poland, Mr. Bronisław Komorowski, gave an important speech on the occasion of the 70th Anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on 27th January 2015. He said: “The Nazis turned my country into a place of enormous terror. They turned Polish soil into a great cemetery of the Jews. (…) We condemn every sign of hatred, anti-Semitism and xenophobia.”

The vice-Speaker of the Sejm (the lower house of the Polish parliament), Mrs. Elżbieta Radziszewska, on the occasion of the final of the contest “Stop racism in sport”, announced by Sejm, stressed that: “Everyone who witnesses an attempt to humiliate somebody, to make him feel worse, should do everything to stop it.

Mayor of Radomsko Robert Zakrzewski said after the desecration of the Jewish Museum, “Museums, monuments and memorials are needed for us to know our common history. Material signs of the Jewish culture are numerous in our city, which is why it is so important to distinguish places that had special meaning for the pre-war population of Radomsko.” Despite this, the first open-air Jewish Museum in Europe was opened on June 2, 2014. Mayor of Andrychów, declared zero tolerance for persons of any nationality, who allow themselves to break the law. According to the mayor, the number of surveillance cameras will increase as will the control over the town .

Podlaski Voivode Maciej Pitanija reacted to the desecration of a mosque, “We don’t know the motives of these vandals, but I am certain that we must be more effective at educating people. Anyone who finished primary school, at least, and knows Polish history should know that Polish Tatars are closely related to our country.

President of Poland Bronislaw Komorowski said in his speech on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on January 27, 2015: "The fascists turned my country into a place of great terror, they turned the Polish land into a large Jewish cemetery ... (...) We condemn any signs hatred, anti-Semitism and Xenophobia."

On November 13, 2013 B. Komorowski called nationalists' attack on the Russian Embassy in Warsaw an “absolute scandal that cannot be justified”. During a Polish radio ZET broadcast he apologised to Russia for behaviour of the attackers. Polish President said that numerous forces sought to portray Poland as a Russophobic state, but it was not the case .

After the attack on the Russian Embassy the representative of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs Marcin Wojciechowski posted: “Hooliganism has no excuse. We condemn the violation of the Vienna Convention” in Twitter.

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk on January 28, 2013 asked MPs to approve gay marriage in an appeal, “You cannot question the existence of such people, as well as cannot stand against their chosen way of life,” - he said .

On February 20, 2014 he commented the nationalist speeches at the Warsaw University, saying – “Screaming, swearing and poorly mannered young men in masks, for now just tried to disrupt a lecture of an academic professor Magdalena Schrody. But if we do not react unambiguously, a month or six months later, they will not only scream, but also start to attack people. Later still, they will hit a professor, who dared conducting a lecture that does not fit their nasty taste.” Prime Minister added that he does not like certain comments that were made about this event. “Most of all I am amazed by some important people’s opinions on yesterday’s event – that nothing really happened. I think, that a terrible thing happened, even though no one had really attacked anyone,” Tusk was saying, “If everyone, without exception – starting from the University’s director, leaders of public opinion, including politicians and media – will not react in a unified way, then a month or six later these hooligans will not just shout things, but will also attack people. I have no doubts about that,” Prime Minister stated.

On June 20, 2013 the Senate of Poland made a statement on the 70th anniversary of the Volyn tragedy, calling the tragic events of 1943 an “ethnic cleansing with sings of genocide”. The statement pointed out that the “Volyn massacre” began of February 9 1943, with the attack of the UIA on Paroslya village, where 173 Polish people were killed. This started a “rough act of physical destruction of Poles, which was conducted by the Bandera faction of the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army”, document says. Polish MPs refused to directly used the term “genocide” in the statement about the 70th anniversary of the Volyn tragedy, but noted the “rough act of physical destruction of Poles, conducted by OUN and UIA” .

On November 6, 2013 at a meeting of the Parliamentary Committee on Justice and Human Rights deputy Ombudsman Ryszard Czerniawski drew attention to the problems that arise in a multicultural society keeping stereotypical assessment of various population groups. In his opinion, it is necessary to train civil servants, particularly the police, to prevent and to properly identify the offenses of racist or xenophobic nature, and provide specification on affairs with foreigners. Also measures to raise public awareness regarding the matter need to be implemented.

On February 26, 2013, it became known that the Lodz municipality has announced the termination of all support for a football club LKS, due to anti-Semitic behaviour of its fans.

The mayor of Punsk, in response to the request of the Commissioner for Human Rights confirmed that the city and the region will once again be restore bilingual Polish-Lithuanian signs .

On September 12, 2013, the mayor of the Polish city of Lublin, Krzysztof Zuk demanded that immediate steps be taken to establish the identity of the authors of anti-Semitic posters found in the city. “I condemn and firmly refuse to justify all acts of aggression and anti-Semitism as such. I will not allow such incidents to go unpunished, and reflect on the image of Lublin, the city with centuries-old multicultural traditions, tolerant and open city people,” - Zuk concluded .

After the arson of a mosque in Gdansk on October 15, 2013, Mayor Paweł Adamowicz said: “This is a shameful gesture, an event that must be met by universal censure. Gdansk has been and will be an open city, the city of tolerance and respect for all people”.

Mayor of Radomsko Robert Zakševski said after the desecration of the Jewish Museum: "Museums, monuments and symbols of memory are necessary, because in this way we learn a common history ... Material traces of Jewish culture are numerous in our city, and that is why it is so important to indicate places that were of particular importance for prewar Jewish population of Radomsko. " Despite the incident, the first Jewish Open Air Museum in Europe was opened on June 2, 2014.

Mayor Andrykhuva Tomasz Jacques after the mass clashes that took place in the city in 2014 declared intolerance of persons of any nationality who allow themselves to violate the law. According to the mayor, the number of surveillance cameras will be increased and the control over visitors to the city will be strengthened.

The governor of Podlasie, Maciej Pitania, declared after the desecration of the mosque in 2014: "We do not know the motives that prompted the vandals to take this step. However, I am sure that we need to conduct broader educational work - after all, anyone who has graduated at least a primary school and knows a little Polish history, should realize that the Polish Tatars are quite strongly connected with our country. The struggle against them is completely incomprehensible here. "

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