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Wednesday, 30 May 2012

The phrase 'Polish death camps' is simply untrue

President Bronisław Komorowski   |   President Bronisław Komorowski President Bronisław Komorowski

The unfair and painful words about a 'Polish death camp' uttered by President Barack Obama do not reflect views or intentions of our American friend, President Bronisław Komorowski said Wednesday. President Obama used the term when awarding a medal to a Polish wartime hero Jan Karski.


Bronisław Komorowski said he had sent a personal letter to Obama and hoped it would produce effects. "I hope we will jointly act to make up for this unfortunate mistake. I believe that every error, every mistake can be corrected if it is given adequate consideration," said the Polish president.


"Every recognised and reconsidered mistake can bring us closer together (..) Together we can do a lot (..) to prevent recurrence of painful phrases that are divorced from the truth but which influence (foreign) opinions about Poland's history and present day," President Komorowski went on.


He recalled that Jan Karski to whom Barack Obama posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Tuesday had acted as a messenger of the Polish underground state and was "part of Polish efforts to move the hearts and minds of citizens of the free world, the West" in the face of the Holocaust. "The Holocaust of Jews was conducted by the Nazis in occupied Polish territories," he stressed.


"We in Poland know well that the phrase 'Polish death camps' is not only painful and unfair but simply untrue," the president also noted. Efforts should continue to persuade those who still used such terms to give them up, he added. (PAP)


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