Poles condemn anti-Semitism

  Polish Independence Day celebrations in Warsaw. Photograph: Radek  Pietruszka/EPA

Polish Independence Day celebrations in Warsaw. Photograph: Radek Pietruszka/EPA

 

Sir, – The article “Poland defends far-right march in Warsaw as ‘expression of patriotic values’” (News, November 14th), refers mainly to the Independence March, which was organised in Warsaw on November 11th.

It is unfortunate that readers in Ireland may have been left with the impression that there was just one event organised in Poland to celebrate its independence day and that the celebration was completely dominated by angry nationalists.

Thousands of Polish citizens, families and seniors spontaneously took part in over 300 celebrations all across the country, as Poles gathered joyfully to celebrate the 99th anniversary of regaining of Poland’s independence.

Regrettably, it is true that the peaceful manifestation in Warsaw was spoiled by the disgraceful behaviour of several hundred aggressive people with racist and xenophobic banners and flags.Their appalling behaviour was not representative of all Poles who participated in the independence parade.

The Polish authorities, including President Andrzej Duda, Prime Minister Beata Szydlo and a number of cabinet ministers, condemned all manifestations of anti-Semitism or nationalist attitudes during the celebration of Poland’s independence.

Under Polish law, spreading racist ideology is an offence, and the prosecutor’s office has started an investigation. – Yours, etc,

RYSZARD SARKOWICZ,

Ambassador of Poland,

Embassy of the

Republic of Poland,

Ailesbury Road,

Ballsbridge,

Dublin 4.