Russia completes work on Polish plane crash: official

20th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

Russia said on Wednesday it had completed an investigation into the aviation catastrophe that killed Polish president Lech Kaczynski and 95 others in Smolensk in April.

"The technical commission of the Interstate Aviation Committee, all its sub-commissions and expert groups have completed their work on the investigation of the plane's catastrophe," Oleg Yermolov, the committee's deputy head, told reporters.

Earlier in the day the committee handed Poland's chief investigator, Edmund Klich, a 200-page report containing results of the investigation on the Polish airliner that crashed near Smolensk in northwestern Russia in April, killing Kaczynski, his wife and all 94 other people aboard the flight.

Yermolov told reporters that Poland had now 60 days to submit its comments before the report on the reasons for the disaster is published. He declined to elaborate on why the Tupolev-154 crashed as it was trying to land in fog.

Kaczynski and dozens of top officials had been flying to Russia to attend a ceremony marking the 1940 massacre in Katyn forest of thousands of Polish army officers at the orders of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin.

The months since the tragedy have seen a warming of once-tense relations between Russia and Poland.

Russia has stressed that it is handing full information to Poland and has made efforts to be open to the media, although Warsaw has complained of delays in the investigation.

© 2010 AFP

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