Walesa Summoned By Prosecutor For Questioning
Walesa Summoned By Prosecutor For Questioning
CHARLES J. GANS
Feb. 15, 1985
WARSAW, Poland (AP) _ Authorities brought charges Friday against seven Solidarity activists captured in a police raid on a meeting in Gdansk, and summoned Lech Walesa for questioning on the same charge - inciting public unrest.
Three of the seven charged were placed under arrest. Walesa, who also attended the meeting Wednesday but was released immediately, accused Poland's communist authorities of ''hatred, repression and ... violation of human rights.''
The Solidarity leaders had met to plan a 15-minute nationwide strike on Feb. 28 protesting government plans to raise food prices. Walese founded the now-outlawed union in Gdansk during the labor unrest of 1980, also set off by price increases, and won the Nobel Peace prize for his work.
A woman who answered the telephone at his apartment Friday said: ''Walesa has been summoned to the prosecutor's office in Gdansk on Saturday at 10:00 a.m. as a suspect.'' She did not give her name.
After getting the summons, Walesa issued a joint statement with Jacek Kuron, founder of the workers' rights group KOR, condemning the raid and the presecutor's decision to place three of the men under arrest. KOR advised Solidarity in the union's formative period, and then disbanded.
''We are deeply convinced that, in the case of illegal acts disguised as legal, one must answer with all one's strength so that it is clear that Poles won't accept passively this return of hatred, repression and the violation of human rights,'' the statement said.
A copy was made available to The Associated Press by Kuron in Warsaw.
Walesa was told his participation in the meeting could lead to charges of causing public unrest and organizing illegal protests, one of his aides said.
''Walesa faces charges under Article 282a, Paragraphs 1 and 2 of the penal code,'' said the aide, adding that a uniformed police officer delivered the summons to the Solidarity leader.
The Gdansk prosecutor's office said the seven activists had been charged under the same article. The maximum penalty is three years in prison.
Poland's official PAP news agency said the three men arrested were Adam Michnik of Warsaw, Bogdan Lis of Gdansk and Wladyslaw Frasyniuk of Wroclaw.
Those charged and released Friday afternoon were Stanislaw Handzlik of Krakow, Janusz Palubicki of Poznan, and Mariusz Wilk and Jacek Merkel of Gdansk.
''The four of us were set free,'' Palubicki said in a telephone interview. ''I was presented ... the text of the charge in which there was talk about preparing the strike. I said I didn't admit to the charge and refused to testify and that was the end.''
PAP said Michnik, Frasyniuk and Lis had ''repeatedly'' violated the law since their release from prison last year under a govenment amnesty for political prisoners.
Under the amnesty approved last July, the old charges and cases against them could be reopened because they were ''resuming opposition activities.''
Lis and Frasyniuk are former members of Solidarity's underground Temporary Coordinating Commission. Michnik is a Solidarity adviser and co-founder with Kuron of KOR.
The crackdown reflects government concern about public reaction to the food price hikes planned for March. Price increases caused widespread worker protests, and brought down governments, in 1970, 1976 and 1980.
Authorities also appear determined to head off any renewal of opposition activity inspired by the conviction of four secret police officers last week in the kidnap-murder of a pro-Solidarity priest, the Rev. Jerzy Popieluszko.
Walesa and the banned union's underground leadership issued the Feb. 28 strike call last month, the first by Solidarity leaders in more than two years.
He and Kuron said last year's amnesty was used to ''mislead public opinion in Poland and the world'' about the authorities' intentions. ''After starting an insane campaign against the (Roman Catholic) church, political arrests are now being started again,'' they said.
Poland's Catholic bishops issued a statement Friday demanding that the regime end an ''unprecedented'' propaganda campaign against the church.
The bishops, in their first official reaction to the Feb. 7 conviction of the four police officers, expressed ''dismay'' that the trial had harmed church-state relations and failed to ''strengthen social peace'' in Poland.
In the statement at the end of a two-day meeting in Warsaw that ended Thursday, Cardinal Jozef Glemp and the bishops said the trial had been used to ''discredit'' the church. They said recent attacks against the church in the state-run media did not ''serve the cause of dialogue and social reconciliation.''