Polish plane disaster - President and 95 others dead
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Some of the most important figures in Polish politics have died in a plane crash en route to a remembrance service for the 20,000 Polish Officers and members of the intelligentsia killed 70 years ago on Stalin's orders in Katyn. 96 people killed in total, including the president Lech Kaczyński, appear to have died.
It is incredibly ironic that this has occured on the 70th anniversary of an event that obliterated Poland's ability to defend itself during World War II.
"It clipped the tops of the trees, crashed down and broke into pieces," the governor of the Smolensk region, Sergei Antufiev, told Russia-24 television news network.
The left wing of the plane, according to reports, seems to have tipped tree tops in heavy fog as it attempted to land in Smolensk, near the border of Belarus and Russia, quite near the scene of the Katyn massacre.
The death of the cabin crew, pilots are still as yet unconfirmed and their names have not been released. The news outlets in Poland are focused on the loss to it's political hierarchy, including the head of the Polish army, the governor of the central bank and the head of the presidential administration. Kaczyński's wife and the families of other senior officials.
A huge amount of people have gathered outside the presidential palace wherea religious services are taking place. Meanwhile, the ceremony to commemorate the deceased at Katyn is also taking place, albeit without the presence of the fatal official Polish delegation.
Despite initial unconfirmed reports that there were 3 survivors, an offical confirmation has followed stating that nobody survived the plane disaster.