Andrzej Duda officially sworn in as president for a second term
Polish President Andrzej Duda was sworn in for a second five-year term in the Polish parliament on Thursday (August 6) after narrowly winning re-election last month.
Andrzej Duda took an official presidential oath before the National Assembly on Thursday and thus formally became the President of Poland for the second time.
President Duda was reelected for a five-year term of office on July 12 with 51.03 percent of the vote. Rafał Trzaskowski, his contender and a Civic Coalition (KO) candidate, received 48.97 percent.
Duda is allied with the ruling nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party. Pro-government lawmakers applauded and chanted his name at various points during the ceremony in the Sejm, the lower house of Poland's parliament.
"All power in civil society (should be) derived from the will of the nation - our great predecessors wrote down these extremely important words in the May 3rd Constitution. They have proved to be very actual over the recent days, weeks, and today," Andrzej Duda stated in his address.
"Power comes from the will of the nation, and the nation has expressed its will in the election. The Polish people have the right to decide who is to be their president, their head of state, and they have made their decision," Duda said.
The president underlined that "today, democracy in Poland is stronger than ever." "Citizens know that Poland's most important affairs and its future depend on their votes. This is a great thing and a huge success of all of us," the president added.
Duda admitted that the recent presidential election was difficult due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the postponement of its date. "But the most important thing is that we managed to hold the election in a democratic, just and very efficient way, and that the Polish people could use their right to vote," he stated.
In a speech to lawmakers after taking the oath of office, Duda also said Poland should strengthen Euro-Atlantic ties and cooperate with NATO allies, in particular the United States.
"In 2022, Poland will take over the presidency of the OSCE, the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe. This will give us an opportunity to promote further the principle we have been constantly supporting on the international forum. The principle of achieving peace through law. We have been promoting the principle at the UN, at the Security Council over many years. To put it in other words - the force of law, not the rule of force. Peace based on the rule of international law. It is an important task, a task that never ends, a task that should bring back the sovereignty and territorial integrity to, among others, our neighbour, Ukraine," Duda underscored.
Once more President Duda took command of Poland's Armed Forces.
"We have to continue modernising and developing our armed forces and our cooperation with the allied forces that are present on our territory, in particular the U.S. army. We must work to strengthen our Euro-Atlantic ties and the North Atlantic Alliance. This is an important task for the future which, I hope, will always remain," the president said in his speech.
Last week, Poland's Defence Ministry, announced the U.S. would establish a permanent military presence in Poland by deploying around 1,000 troops.
Later on Thursday, President Andrzej Duda attended a mass in St John's Metropolitan Cathedral in Warsaw.
After the mass, Duda laid wreaths at tombs and memorials for Pope John Paul II, Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński, who was persecuted by communist authorities during the Cold War, and presidents of Poland in the inter-war period.
Źródło: TVN24 News in English, Reuters, PAP, president.pl