Slovak Foreign Affairs Minister Miroslav Lajčák has expressed its deepest condolences to his Polish counterpart Radek Sikorski in connection with the tragic crash of the airplane carrying Polish President Lech Kaczynski along with many of the country's top officials near the Russian town of Smolensk on April 10, TASR was told by the Foreign Affairs Ministry.
"It's a tremendous tragedy that has affected all of us. I ensure you that Slovakia, as a neighbour and a good friend, is standing by the Polish nation in this difficult situation, and it will do everything possible to help to soothe the repercussions of this terrible accident," said Lajčák.
The plane with 96 people on board, including President Kaczynski and First Lady Maria Kacznyska, crashed while landing in heavy fog at Smolensk airport on April 10 morning, killing everyone on board. The plane also carried Poland's army chief General Franciszek Gagor, Central Bank governor Slawomir Skrzypek, MPs and leading historians, wrote TASR. The delegation was flying from Warsaw to Smolensk to mark the 70th anniversary of the Katyn massacre, in which thousands of Poles were slaughtered by Soviet forces.
"I want to express my deep and sincere condolences to all the bereaved and the whole of Polish nation," said Prime Minister Robert Fico said. "It is truly very hard to understand for us, since everybody who is active in politics and uses the same means of transportation knows how these trips are secured."
If it is proven that the tragic crash of the plane was merely an accident, it most likely won't have any impact on Russian-Polish relations, said Slovak political analyst Miroslav Kusy for TASR. "If everything is investigated, it shouldn't affect the mutual relations to any extent," he said.
11. Apr 2010 at 20:00