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Poland intensifies the fight against espionage in favor of Russia: Proposals outlined

Poland intensifies the fight against espionage in favor of Russia: Proposals outlined Photo: Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk (Getty Images)

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk has proposed to re-establish the Polish Commission to Investigate Russian Influence. The reason for this was the incident with Polish judge Tomasz Szmydt and the risk of increased espionage in the country in favor of Russia, according to Reuters.

The prime minister noted that the issue of resuming the work or creating an appropriate body that will more effectively investigate Russian influence on Polish politics is on the agenda.

“We have a commission (on Russian influence), but there are constitutional reservations as to its operation," Tusk told reporters after a security meeting, during which the spy threat from Russia and Belarus was discussed.

One of the main reasons for this proposal was the incident with the judge of the Warsaw Administrative Court, Tomasz Szmydt, who had access to Polish military secrets and recently sought asylum in Belarus.

Tusk asked Tomasz Siemoniak, the cabinet member responsible for coordinating Poland's intelligence services, to prepare recommendations for the resumption of the Commission's work.

“We have no doubt...that Mr Szmydt is serving a foreign state, foreign services,” Siemoniak said in an interview with the private TV channel TVN24, emphasizing the fact that the judge had appeared on Belarusian and Russian television attacking the Polish government.

“You can see from the sequence of events, how quickly he ended up on Russian state television...that this is a planned operation which today above all has taken on a propaganda dimension,” he said.

The Commission to Investigate Russian Influence was formed in 2023 by Poland's previous nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) government. However, Tusk's Civic Coalition group condemned the body's activities, calling it a vehicle for a witchhunt against him as it can ban politicians from holding office.

The Commission also faced opposition from the European Union and is currently not functioning.

Pro-Russian agents in Poland

Recently, a large number of pro-Russian agents and spies have become more active in Poland. This is because the country is the main distribution center for the supply of Western weapons to Ukraine.

Recently, Tomasz Szmydt, a judge of the Warsaw Administrative Court, applied for asylum in Belarus. The judge claimed that he was subjected to political persecution in Poland and that he resigned as a judge in protest against the policy, which he said was dragging the country into conflict with Belarus and Russia.

In June, Szmydt was supposed to rule on cases of granting access to information classified by NATO and the European Union. Prosecutors are investigating whether he was a spy.

Meanwhile, Polish border guards detained a deserter from the Russian army on the border with Belarus. Warsaw is trying to find out whether the man was really a deserter who fled the war or whether he was supposed to perform some task for the Russian services.