Grzegorz Schetyna

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Grzegorz Schetyna
Grzegorz Schetyna (cropped).jpg
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
22 September 2014 – 16 November 2015
Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz
Preceded by Radosław Sikorski
Succeeded by Witold Waszczykowski
Leader of Civic Platform
Assumed office
26 January 2016
Preceded by Ewa Kopacz
Marshal of the Sejm
In office
8 July 2010 – 8 November 2011
Preceded by Bronisław Komorowski
Succeeded by Ewa Kopacz
Acting President of Poland
In office
8 July 2010 – 6 August 2010
Prime Minister Donald Tusk
Preceded by Bogdan Borusewicz (Acting)
Succeeded by Bronisław Komorowski
as President
Leader of the Civic Platform in the Sejm
In office
9 October 2009 – 22 July 2010
Leader Donald Tusk
Preceded by Grzegorz Dolniak (Acting)
Succeeded by Tomasz Tomczykiewicz
Minister of the Interior and Administration
In office
16 November 2007 – 13 October 2009
Prime Minister Donald Tusk
Preceded by Władysław Stasiak
Succeeded by Jerzy Miller
Personal details
Born Grzegorz Juliusz Schetyna
(1963-02-18) 18 February 1963 (age 53)
Opole, Poland
Political party Civic Platform
Other political
affiliations
Liberal Democratic Congress (1991–1994)
Freedom Union (1994–2001)
Religion Roman Catholicism

Grzegorz Juliusz Schetyna (Polish pronunciation: [ˈɡʐɛɡɔʂ sxɛˈtɨna]) born February 18, 1963 in Opole, is a Polish politician, who served as Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland from 2014 to 2015. He is a former Marshal of the Sejm and Acting President of Poland. Since 26 January 2016 he is a leader of Civic Platform.

Early career[edit]

In the early 1990s, Schetyna co-founded a commercial broadcaster, Radio Eska, and chaired the Śląsk Wrocław basketball team in 1994-97.[1]

Political career[edit]

Early beginnings[edit]

In the late 1980s, Schetyna headed the University of Wrocław’s branch of the Independent Students’ Union, the student arm of the Solidarność (Solidarity) trade-union movement, before holding a series of posts in the Liberal-Democratic Congress and then the Freedom Union party in the 1990s, along with Donald Tusk and several other key figures in Polish politics.[2] When Tusk co-founded Civic Platform in 2001, Schetyna became secretary-general.[3]

Schetyna was first elected to the Sejm as a candidate of the Civic Platform in the national elections on September 25, 2005 after receiving 14,978 votes in 1 Legnica district. Following the 2007 parliamentary election, he served as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Internal Affairs and Administration under Prime Minister Donald Tusk. As interior minister, he championed the badly needed renovation of provincial roads in Poland. In a 2009 cabinet reshuffle,[4] he left the government abruptly amid tensions between his faction within the ruling Civic Platform party and Tusk.[5]

Schetyna was also a member of Sejm 1997–2001, Sejm 2001–2005, Sejm 2005–2007, Sejm 2007–2011.

After stepping down, he moved to the post of head of the Civic Platform Sejm caucus.

Marshal of the Sejm, 2010–2011[edit]

Following Bronisław Komorowski's victory in the 2010 presidential election, Schetyna was nominated as the Civic Platform's candidate to succeed the President-elect as the Marshal of the Sejm.[6]

On July 8 he was elected Marshal of the Sejm and thus assumed the post of the Acting President of Poland. Schetyna served as the interim head of state until Komorowski's inauguration on August 6, 2010.[7]

Schetyna ceased being Sejm Marshal on November 8, 2011; Ewa Kopacz replaced him and later took his job as the Civic Platform's first deputy leader.[8]

Committee on Foreign Affairs, 2011–2014[edit]

Between 2011 and 2014, Schetyna served as chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs.[9] Shortly after the referendum on the status of Crimea held on March 16, 2014, he and his counterparts of the Weimar Triangle parliaments – Elisabeth Guigou of France and Norbert Röttgen of Germany – visited Kyiv to express their countries’ firm support of the territorial integrity and the European integration of Ukraine.[10] This was the first time that parliamentarians of the Weimar Triangle had ever made a joint trip to a third country.[11]

During Tusk's seven years in power, Schetyna tried several times to challenge him but was sidelined.[12] By 2014, news media reported about increased rivalry and tension between him and Tusk.

Minister of Foreign Affairs, 2014–2015[edit]

When Tusk stepped down from his position in September 2014 to become the President of the European Council, Schetyna announced he would run for leadership of the Civic Platform. This was widely seen as a direct challenge to incoming Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz, as by tradition the prime minister is also party leader.[13]

For domestic political reasons Kopacz therefore decided to replace Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski with Schetyna.[14] Unlike his predecessor in the job, Schetyna was unknown outside Poland at the time.[15] Upon taking office, Kopacz ordered him to redraft Poland's foreign policy urgently and present it to parliament.[16]

In February 2015, Schetyna announced that Poland would be the first country to pay damages for participating in the US Central Intelligence Agency’s secret rendition program after its was found to have hosted a facility used for illegal rendition and interrogation. In doing so, Poland followed a ruling of the European Court of Human Rights ordering it to pay former detainees Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri and Abu Zubaydah.[17]

In September 2015, Schetyna summoned the Russian ambassador to Poland, Sergey Andreyev, after the ambassador, in an interview aired by private broadcaster TVN24, said Poland was partly responsible for Nazi Germany invading in 1939 because it had repeatedly blocked the formation of a coalition against Berlin in the run-up to the conflict.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Annabelle Chapman (October 16, 2014), Grzegorz Schetyna – surprise replacement European Voice.
  2. ^ Annabelle Chapman (October 16, 2014), Grzegorz Schetyna – surprise replacement European Voice.
  3. ^ Annabelle Chapman (October 16, 2014), Grzegorz Schetyna – surprise replacement European Voice.
  4. ^ Marek Strzelecki and Malgorzata Halaba (October 8, 2009), Polish Premier Dismisses Several Cabinet Members Wall Street Journal.
  5. ^ Marcin Sobczyk and Patryk Wasilewski (September 19, 2014), Poland's Prime Minister Names New Cabinet Wall Street Journal.
  6. ^ http://wybory.gazeta.pl/wybory/1,106728,8104609,Schetyna_zarekomendowany_na_marszalka_Sejmu.html
  7. ^ http://wiadomosci.gazeta.pl/Wiadomosci/1,80271,8118399,Grzegorz_Schetyna_zostal_nowym_marszalkiem_Sejmu.html
  8. ^ Pawel Sobczak and Christian Lowe (September 19, 2014), New Polish PM brings her rival into government Reuters.
  9. ^ Marcin Sobczyk and Patryk Wasilewski (September 19, 2014), Poland's Prime Minister Names New Cabinet Wall Street Journal.
  10. ^ Weimar Triangle countries support the territorial integrity and European integration of Ukraine Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, press release of April 11, 2014.
  11. ^ Parlamentarier des Weimarer Dreiecks: Röttgen, Guigou und Schetyna in Kiew Bundestag, press release of April 8, 2014.
  12. ^ Pawel Sobczak and Christian Lowe (September 19, 2014), New Polish PM brings her rival into government Reuters.
  13. ^ Pawel Sobczak and Christian Lowe (September 19, 2014), New Polish PM brings her rival into government Reuters.
  14. ^ Pawel Sobczak and Christian Lowe (September 19, 2014), New Polish PM brings her rival into government Reuters.
  15. ^ Marcin Sobczyk and Patryk Wasilewski (September 19, 2014), Poland's Prime Minister Names New Cabinet Wall Street Journal.
  16. ^ Marcin Sobczyk and Patryk Wasilewski (October 1, 2014), Poland's New Premier Signals Shift in Ukraine Policy Wall Street Journal.
  17. ^ Henry Foy (February 18, 2015), Poland agrees to pay 2 victims of CIA rendition Financial Times.
Political offices
Preceded by
Władysław Stasiak
Minister of the Interior and Administration
2007–2009
Succeeded by
Jerzy Miller
Preceded by
Bogdan Borusewicz
Acting
Acting President of Poland
2010
Succeeded by
Bronisław Komorowski
President
Preceded by
Bronisław Komorowski
Marshal of the Sejm
2010–2011
Succeeded by
Ewa Kopacz
Preceded by
Radosław Sikorski
Minister of Foreign Affairs
2014–2015
Succeeded by
Witold Waszczykowski
Party political offices
Preceded by
Grzegorz Dolniak
Acting
Leader of the Civic Platform in the Sejm
2009–2010
Succeeded by
Tomasz Tomczykiewicz
Preceded by
Ewa Kopacz
Leader of the Civic Platform
2016–present
Incumbent