20,000 Poles demonstrate on the streets of Warsaw
Saturday, October 7, 2006
No fewer than three major political demonstrations took place in Warsaw, the capital of Poland on Saturday, October 7. In total, more than 20,000 people flooded the streets and squares of the city to express either their dissatisfaction with or support for Jarosław Kaczyński's government, marred by a political corruption scandal and inability to form stable parliamentary majority.
The leading opposition party, Platforma Obywatelska, organized the "Blue March". According to the police, the march through Warsaw's historic part gathered the most people, about 11,000, who demanded new elections and expressed their discontent with the current government. Polls show over 60% of Poles want early elections, and Platforma is currently in the lead by a sizeable majority.
In response to that, Kaczyński's Prawo i Sprawiedliwość held a gathering of 8,000 government supporters in front of the socrealist landmark Palace of Culture and Science in the very centre of Warsaw.
The third demonstration, much smaller in size, was held by junior government coalition partner, the far-right Christian conservative Liga Polskich Rodzin. According to the police about 2,000 people marched through the streets of Warsaw.
- Rob Strybel. "Thousands in rival rallies over Polish crisis" — Reuters, October 7, 2006
- Adam Easton. "Secret film sparks Polish scandal" — BBC News Online, October 7, 2006
- Vanessa Gera (Associated Press), Ryan Lucas contributed. "Thousands Call for Polish Gov't Ouster" — Guardian Unlimited, October 7, 2006
- PAP. "Manifestacje w Warszawie przebiegły spokojnie" — Wirtualna Polska, October 7, 2006