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    Police Brutality at Farmers’ Protest in Warsaw Sparks Political Controversy

    The recent farmers’ protest in Warsaw on March 6th turned violent as clashes erupted between the police and demonstrators, leading to accusations of police brutality and sparking a political storm in Poland.

    According to eyewitness accounts and photographic evidence, the police repeatedly misused their power and authority during the protest. Instances of excessive force included the deployment of water cannons, the use of pepper spray against peaceful protesters, throwing cobblestones and flares towards the crowds, and the brutal arrest of several individuals, including one man holding a flag.

    A particularly shocking image captured by photojournalist Zbigniew Kaczmarek of Strefa Wolnego Słowa surfaced on the front page of “Gazeta Polska Codziennie.” The photo depicts a police officer using pepper spray directly on a protester’s face at close range, despite there being no apparent threat to the officer or others nearby.

    The Minister of the Interior and Administration, Marcin Kierwiński, addressed the events, attributing the escalation to an initial attack on police officers with cobblestones. He stated that 14 officers were injured during the clashes. However, opposition figures swiftly condemned the police actions, with promises to file a motion of no confidence against Kierwiński.

    Kierwiński defended the police response, emphasizing that it was provoked by the initial attack on officers. He asserted that the use of tear gas and arrests came only after the police were assaulted with cobblestones. On the other hand, Mariusz Błaszczak, a member of the Law and Justice (PiS) party blamed Kierwiński for the entire incident and announced plans for a vote of no confidence against him.

    Błaszczak emphasized the party’s rejection of using the police for political purposes and condemned labelling farmers as hooligans. The move to file a motion of no confidence against Kierwiński reflects growing discontent within the opposition towards the government’s handling of the situation.

    The controversy surrounding the farmers’ protest highlights deeper tensions within Polish society, raising questions about the appropriate use of police force, freedom of assembly, and the politicization of law enforcement. 

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