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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Top officials praise Polish miners on annual feast day

04.12.2021 13:00
Top state officials on Saturday praised Polish miners as they traditionally mark “Barbórka,” a day of celebrations named after their patron saint.
St. Barbaras Day festivities in the southern Polish city of Katowice on Saturday.
St. Barbara's Day festivities in the southern Polish city of Katowice on Saturday.Photo: PAP/Hanna Bardo

On St. Barbara’s Day, President Andrzej Duda thanked miners for their hard work.

In a message posted on his presidential website, Duda said: "On behalf of the Republic of Poland, on behalf of my compatriots, I would like to express my great respect and gratitude for your difficult and much needed work, without which the Polish economy would not be able to function and without which the Polish people would not be able to live safe and peaceful lives."

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said in a Facebook message that miners were "doing hard and extremely important work, ensuring Poland's energy security."

He added that their efforts were "particularly important in the face of the current geopolitical situation and the threats related to it."

Barbórka celebrations in Poland see performances by miners’ orchestras, beer fests organised by trade unions, and awards and distinctions handed out at special gatherings.

The tradition is particularly strong in Silesia, a coal-mining region in southern Poland.

St. Barbara was an early Christian Greek saint and martyr. She is the patron saint of miners, artillerymen, military engineers and others who work with explosives.

Polish miners have traditionally turned to her to ask for protection while carrying out their often dangerous work.

The Polish president said earlier this week that a move away from coal power in his country "must be done wisely" and in a people-friendly way.

(gs)

Source: PAP, prezydent.pl