The new public protector says she will leave the dispute over the state capture report prepared by h.
WARSAW - Tens of thousands of Poles kept a sombre vigil on a central Warsaw square early yesterday, laying a carpet of candles and flowers to mourn the death of President Lech Kaczynski in a plane crash.
Bronislaw Komorowski, the head of Poland's lower house of parliament who took over as interim head of state, was among those who poured into Pilsudski Square to mourn Kaczynski and other senior officials who died Saturday when their plane crashed while trying to land in thick fog in western Russia.
"The unprecedented scale of this tragedy is unique on a global scale. We have to deal with this very difficult problem, and we will deal with it," Komorowski said.
Komorowski, who has ordered a week of official mourning, lit candles on the vast square, the traditional venue for large gatherings in Warsaw and where pope John Paul II held masses during his historic visits to his homeland.
The crowds gathered in the cold sang one of the late pope's favourite songs, while strains of funereal music by Chopin came from banks of speakers set up for the bicentenary of the Polish composer's birth.
Flags outside the presidential palace flew at half mast, while thousands of residents flew flags from their balconies.
Crowds left red and white roses and lit candles in front of the 200-year-old presidential palace near Warsaw's old town, gathering late on Saturday and remaining there hours later.
Some tried to look towards the future despite the loss not only of the president but also Poland's central bank governor and armed forces chiefs of staff, who were among the 97 who died when their ageing Soviet-era jet crashed.
"We are here to join other Poles in their grief, it is by joining together that we will pull through this tragedy," said Malgorzata Leszewska, an engineer who came with her husband and their young son and daughter.
Dozens of children's drawings were laid around the square. On some they had written "To the memory of Madam President and Mr. President."
Across the devoutly Catholic country, people flooded into churches to pay homage to and mourn the dead. They were expected to return for Mass yesterday morning. - Sapa-AFP