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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

President submits bill to honour victorious post-WWI anti-German uprising

14.09.2021 22:30
Poland's President Andrzej Duda has sent draft legislation to parliament that would make December 27 a national day of remembrance for the successful Wielkopolskie Uprising of 1918-1919, his aides announced on Tuesday.
Polish President Andrzej Duda.
Polish President Andrzej Duda.Photo: PAP/Wojciech Olkuśnik

The bill has been prepared in response to voices from Poland's western Wielkopolskie province, including community organisations and local governments, according to officials.

Under the legislation, December 27 would become a public holiday known as National Day of the Victorious Wielkopolskie Uprising, in tribute to its heroic participants.

The western Polish region rose up against its German occupiers on December 27, 1918, a day after the renowned pianist and future statesman Ignacy Jan Paderewski arrived in the provincial capital Poznań and gave his famous speech in front of a hotel in the city.

The regional army, gradually reinforced by volunteers from other parts of Poland, fought fiercely, losing some 2,000 soldiers, with a further 6,000 injured. 

After an armistice deal was struck in Trier on February 16, 1919, both sides called a ceasefire and drew a demarcation line. Under the Treaty of Versailles of June 1919, "the line officially became Poland's western frontier," the presidential office noted.     

The importance of the Wielkopolskie Uprising for Polish independence "is difficult to overstate," officials said, "because the resurrected Poland may not have survived as a country after World War I had it not been for the insurgency of the people from Wielkopolskie province."

The proposed new national celebration aims to restore the Wielkopolskie Uprising to "its rightful place in the national consciousness," the presidential office added.

If passed by parliament, the bill will become law 14 days after being published.

(pm/gs)

Source: PAP