UPDATE: Polish president funeral set - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: Polish president funeral set

Courtesy: Reuters Courtesy: Reuters

WARSAW, Poland (WKOW) -- President Lech Kaczynski and his wife will be buried Sunday in Krakow's Wawel Cathedral.

That is the location where the country past presidents and kings have been laid to rest. Kaczynski and his wife were among 96 people killed Saturday in a plane crash in western Russia.

The cathedral is also the resting place of the last Polish leader killed in office, Gen. Wladyslaw Sikorski, the exiled World War II leader who perished in a mysterious plane crash off Gibraltar in 1943.


WASHINGTON (WKOW) -- President Barack Obama has telephoned Poland's prime minister to express his condolences after a plane crash killed that nation's president along with some of the country's highest military and civilian leaders.

In a statement, Obama describes President Lech Kaczynski as a distinguished statesman, widely admired as a leader dedicated to advancing freedom and human dignity. He praised Kaczynski as having played a key role in the Solidarity movement that won economic reforms and free elections.

Obama also says the other Polish leaders who died with Kaczynski helped shape that country's "inspiring democratic transformation."

Obama noted that Kaczynski, his wife and the rest of their delegation, were on their way to observe the 70th anniversary of the massacre of thousands of Polish officers by Soviet secret police.


MOSCOW (WKOW) -- Russian authorities put the death toll at 96 in the crash of the Polish President's plane.

President Lech Kaczynski was among a delegation of 88 people, including his wife and some of Poland's highest military and civilian leaders, traveling to an event marking the 70th anniversary of the massacre of thousands of Polish officers by Soviet secret police.

Officials say the plane was trying to land in thick fog when it crashed. A regional official says tentative findings indicate the plane hit the treetops before going in. The state news channel has been airing footage from the crash site that shows pieces of the plane scattered widely amid some trees.

The Polish foreign ministry says in addition to the president, Poland's army chief of staff, national bank president, deputy foreign minister, army chaplain, head of the National Security Office, deputy parliament speaker, civil rights commissioner and at least two presidential aides and three lawmakers were on board.

The prime minister and other top government ministers were not aboard the plane.


MOSCOW (WKOW) -- Polish President Lech Kaczynski and his wife died Saturday along with 130 others when their plane crashed while trying to land in western Russia, officials said.

The governor of the Smolensk region, where the crash took place about 11 a.m. (0700 GMT), said no one survived.

"The Polish presidential plane did not make it to the runway while landing. Tentative findings indicate that it hit the treetops and fell apart," Sergei Anufriev said on state news channel Rossiya-24. "Nobody has survived the disaster."

The Polish foreign ministry confirmed that Kaczynski and his wife were aboard the plane.

The head of Russia's top investigative body, Sergei Markin, said there were a total of 132 people on the plane, a Tu-154.

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