WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The Latest on the dispute over a far-right march in Warsaw, which organizers had wanted to hold on Sunday, Poland’s Independence Day (all times local):
The district court in Warsaw has overturned a ban on a march organized by nationalist groups, arguing that freedom of assembly is protected by the constitution.
The decision late Thursday by Judge Michal Jakubowski is the latest development surrounding an Independence Day march on Sunday to honor Poland’s 100 years of national independence.
For the past decade, far-rights nationalists have been organizing marches on the Nov. 11 holiday in Warsaw. On Wednesday, Warsaw’s city mayor banned the march citing security reasons and a need to resist “aggressive nationalism.”
The president and prime minister quickly announced that an inclusive state march would take place instead Sunday along the same route.
It wasn’t immediately clear if the court’s ruling would prevent the state festivities from taking place.
Poland’s prime minister says authorities will do everything in their power to crack down on any expressions of extremism at a weekend march marking the centennial of Poland’s independence.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki’s vow comes a day after the government took over the organization of an annual Independence Day march that in past years saw radical nationalists brandishing racist banners and slogans. Until Wednesday, the event was supposed to be organized by nationalist organizations.
He says “we want the march to be peaceful and not provoke tensions.”
Groups of extremists have in past years joined the Nov. 11 march, which is meant to mark Poland’s regaining of its independence at the end of World War I after more than a century of foreign rule.