Polish opposition sees double standards in distancing rules

Police, wearing face masks to protect against coronavirus, detain independent candidate in Poland’s presidential election, Pawel Tanajno, center, during a small protest of business people opposing coronavirus lockdown measures, in Warsaw, Poland, Saturday, May 23, 2020. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Police in Poland on Saturday called on a small protest by business people to disperse because of a ban on large gatherings and the need to keep social distancing amid the coronavirus pandemic .

The protest, demanding an end to an anti-COVID-19 lockdown, was attended by a few dozen people in downtown Warsaw. It was led by an independent candidate in Poland’s trouble-ridden presidential election, running against incumbent President Andrzej Duda.

The election was planned for May 10 but was delayed amid political and legislative confusion in midst of the pandemic. The new date for the vote has not been officially announced yet, but the government suggests it will be held June 28.

The independent candidate, Pawel Tanajno, a businessman, was taken to a police car and had his documents checked.

The protesters, wearing face masks because of the pandemic, demanded that the government lift restrictions imposed on businesses in the fight against the new coronavirus. They carried banners with the Polish colors of white and red, some with text calling for the end of the government of the right-wing Law and Justice party.

Large numbers of police separated reporters from the protest.

Some opposition lawmakers and government critics noted that police did not intervene earlier Saturday when Duda was meeting with people in a crowded open-air market on a campaign stop in Garwolin, near Warsaw.

For his part, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki was forced to explain why he could be seen in photos with three other people at a restaurant Friday, without protective masks.

He said the distancing was “advised, but is not an order.”

With a population of some 38 million, Poland has reported almost 21,000 coronavirus cases, and nearly 1,000 deaths.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Recent Videos

Robert Suhr KX News 5:20am Forecast 5-29-20

Thumbnail for the video titled "Robert Suhr KX News 5:20am Forecast 5-29-20"

Robert One Minute 5-29

Thumbnail for the video titled "Robert One Minute 5-29"

Furry Friday 5-29

Thumbnail for the video titled "Furry Friday 5-29"

Bobbleheads for COVID-19

Thumbnail for the video titled "Bobbleheads for COVID-19"

Nail Salons New Norm

Thumbnail for the video titled "Nail Salons New Norm"

Mr. Baseball, Bottineau

Thumbnail for the video titled "Mr. Baseball, Bottineau"

Car of the Year

Thumbnail for the video titled "Car of the Year"

Military Affairs Williston

Thumbnail for the video titled "Military Affairs Williston"

Rotary Donates

Thumbnail for the video titled "Rotary Donates"

Rotary Club Donations

Thumbnail for the video titled "Rotary Club Donations"

South Border Golf

Thumbnail for the video titled "South Border Golf"

Century Girls Soccer

Thumbnail for the video titled "Century Girls Soccer"

Thursday, May 28th, 2020 - KX Storm Team Evening Forecast - Dave Holder

Thumbnail for the video titled "Thursday, May 28th, 2020 - KX Storm Team Evening Forecast - Dave Holder"

Unemployment Gray Areas

Thumbnail for the video titled "Unemployment Gray Areas"

IT Department Money

Thumbnail for the video titled "IT Department Money"

KX Storm Team Full Evening Forecast w/Tom Schrader 5/28

Thumbnail for the video titled "KX Storm Team Full Evening Forecast w/Tom Schrader 5/28"

Kids and Mental Health

Thumbnail for the video titled "Kids and Mental Health"

Lifeguard Shortage

Thumbnail for the video titled "Lifeguard Shortage"

BCBSND Partnership

Thumbnail for the video titled "BCBSND Partnership"

Volunteers turned Friends

Thumbnail for the video titled "Volunteers turned Friends"
More Video

KX News Trending Stories

Don't Miss

Daily Pledge

More Daily Pledge