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Russia blames pilot pressure for Kaczynski crash

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Russia blames pilot pressure for Kaczynski crash


Russian investigators have rejected elements of a Polish report into the plane crash which killed Polish President Lech Kaczynski last year.

Both countries have looked into the incident but Poland claims a series of errors were to blame, while understating pilot pressure put on them by dignitaries.

The Russian version of events has taken issue with this, claiming the pilots were obviously intimidated. Technical head of the Aviation Committee, Aleksey Morizov, argued that “the evidence of psychological pressure is proved by the words of the crew, such as, ‘I don’t know, but if we don’t land, he will be furious’. These points in the Polish report are described as indirect pressure which, I quote, ‘was only one element contributing to the events in the last stage of the flight.’ In our report, all these things are given their proper emphasis.”

The plane carrying Poland’s president and his wife along with 94 other passengers and crew crashed in heavy fog as it attempted to land near the Russian city of Smolensk. Although initially the tragedy brought Moscow and Warsaw together in grief, relations have since become strained.

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