14 Dec 2017 19:04

Putin sees alternative Polish theories of 2018 plane crash near Smolensk as nonsense, bluffing

MOSCOW. Dec 14 (Interfax) - Russian President Vladimir Putin described the alternative theories of the Polish plane crash near Smolensk in 2010, which have reportedly been pursued in Poland, as nonsense and bluffing and called on the Poles not to take advantage of the tragedy for domestic political purposes.

The 2010 crash killed numerous top-ranking Polish officials, including President Lech Kaczynski.

"We are really tired of this kind of bluffing. Just some nonsense and ravings, what are they talking about?" Putin said in commenting on a Polish journalist's question voicing a theory according to which the crash might have been caused by an explosion on board the plane.

Putin pointed out that during the Polish plane crash in April 2010 he served as Russia's prime minister and had no direct relation to foreign political activities and the work of special services.

"If there were explosions on board, where did the plane take off from? From Moscow or from Warsaw? Then it might have been planted there. Do you mean we sneaked it there? Did some Russian agents plant explosives there, really? Look at home then," Putin said.

"There were no explosions; after all, both Polish and Russian experts examined this," he said.

"Well, it was a misfortune, a disaster. We grieved together with you. But no, someone has to work something up out of nothing. The same with the plane's debris. Just don't make anything up. If there are problems and a tragedy, this needs to be treated as a tragedy, without making any political insinuations here," he said.

Such allegations can only further complicate Russian-Polish relations "for the sake of raising someone's ratings at home," he said.

The anti-Russian course currently pursued by Polish leaders is wrong and is not in the Polish people's interests, Putin said.

"It seems to me that Russian-Polish relations are more important than the current internal political rivalry in Poland between various forces making use of the anti-Russian factor in this rivalry. In the end, turn this page over, grow up and find the maturity to meet the requirements of the day and the interests of the Polish nation and the Polish people," he said.

"Clinging to these problems and continuing to ruin Russian-Polish relations will not benefit Poland," he said.

"Just calculate the losses from various sanctions that Poland has joined, calculate how many jobs have been lost and how many businesses oriented toward the Russian market could have been set up," Putin said. "We don't need anything from Poland. We want to develop relations. I hope this approach will prevail," he said.