Poland calls on Russia to investigate Smolensk picture leak
Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski
Poland expects decisive action from Russian authorities, including an investigation and punishment of persons responsible for internet leak of drastic pictures of the presidential Tu-154 air crash victims, Poland's Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski said in a statement.
Polish President Lech Kaczynski and 95 others, including top Polish officials, perished in a crash on April 10, 2010, as their plane attempted to land in heavy fog at the Smolensk airport in Russia.
“The Russians were territorially entitled to conduct their inquiries into the disaster, but no one had the right to injure the feelings of the victims' families, friends and associates,” Sikorski said.
Several Russian websites released photographs of mangled bodies from the crash. Reuters, which accessed one of the websites, reported that the pictures showed remains on a plastic canvas and the body of what appeared to be President Kaczynski on a metal gurney and a black coffin.
The Polish Foreign Ministry has summoned Russian Ambassador Alexander Alexeyev and demanded that Russia find and punish the individuals who posted the photos.
The spokesman of Russian Investigative Committee said, as quoted by RT.com, that the photographs that appeared on the internet do not come from Russia’s official files on the disaster.
"Measures have been taken to remove those photographs from the media, and proceedings have started to identify the persons who took the abovementioned photographs and provided them for publication, and to determine the motives behind this act," Vladimir Markin told reporters in Moscow on Wednesday, RT.com reported.
News that the photos were available online was reported by a Polish Radio Zet broadcaster. According to the Polish Internal Security Agency (ABW) some pictures of Smolensk victims had already appeared on Russian websites on September 28. At that time the Polish Interior Ministry requested explanation from the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), Interior Minister Jacek Chichocki said on Wednesday.