Democracy Digest: Poland Arrests Russian Spy and Bans Russian Athletes

Elsewhere, the Polish government announced this week it would ban Russian and Belarusian athletes from participating in the European Games, taking place this June and July in Krakow and surrounding areas. The decision is contrary to that just announced by the International Olympic Committee, which said this week that Russian and Belarusian sports persons should be allowed to return to international competition by competing under a neutral flag. "The organising committee supports the position of the Ukrainian authorities opposing the admission of Russians and Belarusians to sports competitions, at least until the end of the bloody war caused by Russia," the statement by the Polish organisers of the European Games said.

Finally, with about six months to go before the general election, a new poll conducted by IPSOS for shows that as many as 11 per cent of Poles would vote for the far-right Confederation party were the election held today. The results sent a shiver down the spine of the liberal opposition in Poland, whose numbers have been stagnating or slightly dropping, because of the probability of PiS uniting with the far-right to govern after the autumn poll. Some prominent politicians in Confederation are currently ruling out such an alliance, and the party does tend to pick up dissatisfied PiS voters, but few doubt that an opportunity to wield power would be enough to overcome any lingering reservations. Another interesting detail is that as many as 37 per cent of Polish men in the 18-39 age group would vote for the far-right party.

Czech trade unionists, led by country's largest KOVO, take part in a demo in Prague on March 29 to protest planned increase in pension age to 68 and the the planned Euro 7 emission standards. Photo: BIRN

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