The leader of Poland’s governing Law and Justice (PiS) party, Jarosław Kaczyński, has settled the libel case brought against him by former liberal Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski by donating 50,000 zloty (€11,000) to the Ukrainian army.
In a statement issued by the leader of the ruling conservatives, Kaczyński expressed his satisfaction that his donation to Ukraine’s war effort closes his dispute with Sikorski.
He said that since Ukraine is currently fighting not only for its own independence and freedom but also for Polish security, it was entirely appropriate to donate the funds to this cause. A copy of the bank transfer has been posted on social media by Krzysztof Sobolewski, the general secretary of Law and Justice (PiS).
Sikorski had offered Kaczyński this resolution in a Twitter post in which he said that, if by the end of January, the conservative leader donated 50,000 zloty to Ukraine’s armed forces, he would waive his rights to execute the settlement of the dispute between the two politicians.
Sikorski accepted the apology issued by Kaczyński, adding that he was pleased they had found a “patriotic solution” He tweeted, “I accept the apology from Jarosław Kaczyński for having called me a ‘diplomatic traitor’ in the form of a payment to the Ukrainian armed forces who are fighting in defense of the whole of Europe. I am pleased that we have found a patriotic solution.”
Back in December, a court in Poland had ruled that Kaczyński should pay 708,000 zloty (€150,000) to meet the costs of issuing a public apology on the Onet news portal for accusing Sikorski of having committed “diplomatic treason.”
In an interview back in 2016 on Onet, Kaczyński accused Sikorski of negligence with regard to the investigation of the Smolensk air disaster in which Kaczyński’s brother and then-President Lech Kaczyński perished in 2010.
Kaczyński more precisely accused the previous liberal government of having acted under the instruction of the Russians and was particularly incensed by the fact that Sikorski authorized Polish diplomats to withdraw any claim for exterritoriality of the site of the air disaster. This, claimed Kaczyński, amounted to “diplomatic treason,” which, under Poland’s penal code, was a serious crime.