Zelensky appeals for fighter jets during surprise visit to UK | Earthquake death toll tops 15,000 | Polish-Belarusian journalist sentenced to eight years in prison | Polish parliament approves judicial reform bill | New national football coach visits Gdańsk

(Fot. Facebook.com/Wołodymyr Zełenski)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky made a surprise visit to the UK yesterday, meeting with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and other national leaders before addressing both houses of the UK Parliament.

During his speech, Zelensky appealed directly to UK lawmakers assembled at Westminster Hall to provide Ukraine with advanced fighter jets to combat Russian aggression. According to media outlets, his message was simple: „Combat aircraft for Ukraine. Wings for freedom.”

After meetings in London, Zelensky traveled to Paris Wednesday evening to meet with French president Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. Zelensky is also expected to appear at the EU Summit today in Brussels.

Source: Polskie Radio, PAP

The death toll from the devastating earthquake that hit southeastern Turkey and northern Syria on Monday is now over 15,000, according to reports by local authorities and emergency services.

Over 12,300 (12,391) people have died, and more than 62,000 (62,914) have been injured by the quakes in Turkey, reports AFP, with an additional 3,000 (2,992) deaths reported in Syria.

Experts now estimate the chances of finding additional survivors under the rubble to be very low. Search efforts being carried out by rescue teams from many countries, including Poland and Ukraine, continue to be hampered by the bitterly cold weather in the region.

Source: PAP

Polish-Belarusian journalist Andrzej Poczobut has been sentenced to 8 years in prison for „fomenting hatred” and „acting to the detriment of Belarus.”

Poczobut, a member of the Union of Poles in Belarus and a journalist for Gazeta Wyborcza, has been in the custody of the Belarusian government since his arrest in March of 2021. The Grodno Circuit Court passed down his sentence after a closed trial that began on January 16. Only family members and Belarusian state media were granted entry into the courtroom.

Poczobut’s arrest and sentencing have met with widespread condemnation by Polish officials and international human rights organizations.

In a post yesterday on social media, Łukasz Jasina, spokesperson for the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, condemned „the unjust verdict issued by the court of an authoritarian state” and welcomed a day when „Andrzej Poczobut and Belarusian Poles will be able to live in free Belarus.”

Amnesty International also called on the Belarusian government to „release all prisoners of conscience” like Poczobut, condemning „the rising wave of persecution, arrests and threats to civil-society activists” in Belarus.

Source: Radio Gdańsk, Polskie Radio

Members of the Sejm voted last night to approve a key judicial reform bill that should enable Poland to access billions in EU funding withheld due to an ongoing dispute over the rule of law.

The draft legislation was voted through Wednesday night by a vote of 233 to 207, with 12 abstentions. All amendments suggested by the Senate last week were rejected during last night’s vote. The planned judicial overhaul now heads to President Andrzej Duda to be signed into law.

Source: Polskie Radio

The new coach for Poland’s national football team is set to visit Gdańsk to watch the Ekstraklasa match between Lechia Gdańsk and Łódź Widzew on Friday.

Fernando Santos was named the new head coach of the Polish national football team on 24 January and returned to Poland from his native Portugal last Tuesday.

The 68-year-old was the head coach of the Greek national team from 2010-2014 and later the head coach for Portugal, whose team took home the 2016 European championship title and the 2019 Nations League trophy during his tenure.

Santos will make his coaching debut for the Polish national team on March 24, when the white-and-reds will face off against the Czech Republic in Prague for the European Championship qualifiers.

The Ekstraklasa match between Lechia Gdańsk and Łódź Widzew is set for 8:30 p.m. Friday at PGE Arena in Gdańsk.

Source: Radio Gdańsk


Today will be partly cloudy and very cold, with very little chance of snow showers and a strong breeze coming in from the southwest. Temperatures will remain at or below freezing, with a high of 1°C or 33°F dropping to a low of -3°C, or 27°F overnight. Slightly warmer weather is expected tomorrow, with an increasing chance of rain or snow heading into the weekend.


Elizabeth Peck/MarWer

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