On Tuesday, a secret meeting of the Sejm’s Administration and Internal Affairs Committee was held on the introduction of a state of emergency in some of the two provinces. The head of the committee, Wiesław Szczepański, said that the deputies had been informed about the situation on the Polish-Belarusian border. Katarzyna Piekarska from the Civic Coalition, who also participated in the meeting, admitted in “Yes it is” on TVN24 that there were additional arguments, but would still vote against the introduction of a state of emergency.
On Tuesday, at noon, a closed session of the Parliamentary Committee on Administration and Internal Affairs was held. The meeting concerned the detailed information of the Ministers of Administration and Interior, National Defense and Foreign Affairs on the situation on the Polish-Belarusian border in connection with the increased influx of refugees and the actions taken by the Government of the Republic of Poland in this regard.
As the head of the parliamentary AiSW committee, Wiesław Szczepański from the Left, informed in an interview with the Polish Press Agency, the meeting lasted 3.5 hours. – For two hours we had presentations by both the minister of internal affairs and administration, the minister of foreign affairs, the chief of military counterintelligence and the minister of national defense about the situation why the state of emergency was introduced – informed the head of the AiSW commission.
– It was mainly the justification of why this is happening, as well as the situation at the border. We also saw operational materials of the border guard on what the transfer of people from Belarus to Poland looks like – he explained, adding that after the presentation there was a discussion and questions. – A dozen or so deputies asked a question that the ministers tried to answer, or representatives of the Ministry of National Defense and the army – he said.
The commission with the participation of the head and deputy head of the Ministry of Interior and Administration
Szczepański pointed out that during the committee meeting, the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Administration declared that a meeting of the Council of Ministers would be held this week, which would adopt an urgent draft law to help entrepreneurs operating in the zone under the state of emergency.
He also informed that the meeting of the Administration and Internal Affairs committee was attended by, among others, the head of the Ministry of Interior and Administration Mariusz Kamiński, deputy head of the Ministry of Interior and Administration Maciej Wąsik, deputy head of the Ministry of National Defense Wojciech Skurkiewicz, deputy head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Marcin Przydacz, head of the Military Counterintelligence Service, head of the Border Guard, and representatives of the Internal Security Agency and the Chancellery of the President Council of Ministers.
Piekarska: I would vote the same after today’s committee
The Tuesday meeting of the committee was also attended by MP Katarzyna Piekarska from the club of the Civic Coalition. She talked about its general course in the “Tak jest” program on TVN24.
– I must say that after today’s commission, I would have voted the same – she said, referring to the fact that she voted against the state of emergency in the Sejm on Monday.
She stated that the committee meeting, which took place after the parliamentary vote on this matter, was “strange”.
However – as she reported – “the conversation at the committee was much better and calmer than at the session of the Sejm”. – Some additional arguments were raised, but they did not convince me that with the usual constitutional measures at the disposal of the services, the army, the Border Guard, it is impossible to defend our border – she said.
State of emergency
On September 2, President Andrzej Duda issued a regulation on the introduction of a state of emergency in the border zone with Belarus, i.e. in part of the Podlaskie and Lubelskie provinces. The strip covers 183 towns (115 in the Podlaskie Voivodeship and 68 in the Lubelskie Voivodeship).
The government has applied for a 30-day state of emergency due to the situation on the border with Belarus. On the Belarusian side, in Usnarz Górny near Krynki (Podlasie province), a group of immigrants who want to get to Poland has been wandering for three weeks. According to the government, these and other people are brought to the border by the services of the Belarusian regime, and the action is a “hybrid war”.
On Monday evening, the majority of the Sejm did not support the resolution abolishing the state of emergency as unjustified by the situation in the country. According to the constitution, a state of emergency may be introduced when, in situations of particular threats, constitutional measures are insufficient.
Main photo source: PAP / Artur Reszko