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Donald TUSK, President of the European Council
European Council President Donald Tusk © European Parliament

Tusk calls Poland intelligence probe “witch-hunt”

20/04/17Government

The feud between European Council President Donald Tusk and the ruling party in his native Poland has intensified as he arrived in the country denouncing a “witch-hunt” against him.

Tusk has been summoned to give evidence to a secretive investigation.

Masses of supporters escorted him from Warsaw’s central railway station to the prosecutor’s office.

Tusk served as Poland’s prime minister from 2007-14. His Civic Platform (PO) party is now the main opposition.

Its chief rival at the time was the nationalist Law and Justice Party (PiS), which is now in power.

PiS leader Jarosław Kaczyński holds Tusk politically responsible for the 2010 plane crash in Smolensk, Russia, which killed his twin Lech Kaczyński, as well as 95 others on-board.

The government has also accused Tusk of abusing his EU position to interfere in domestic affairs.

Last month, Poland was the only one of 28 EU member states to vote against Tusk’s re-election as president of the European Council.

Tusk is currently being questioned as part of an investigation into whether two former leaders of the country’s military counter-intelligence service (SKW) exceeded their authority in agreeing to co-operate with a foreign intelligence service in 2010 and 2013.

According to reports, at stake is whether Tusk authorised this alleged agreement with Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB).

“I have no doubt that this is part of a political witch-hunt,” Tusk said, adding that its outcome now rests in the “hands of the people”.