International media reactions to the death of Paweł Adamowicz
A progressive voice, a man connected with Gdańsk since his birth, defender of minorities, with these words the international media described Paweł Adamowicz. The Mayor of Gdańsk died several hours after being stabbed with a knife during the finale of the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity event on Sunday. He was 53.
Adamowicz was attacked while attending the annual Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity, which raises money for medical equipment in hospitals. He was resuscitated on the stage and taken to a hospital where he underwent a 5-hour-long surgery.
He died on Monday. Poland's Minister of Health Łukasz Szumowski informed about his passing.
"Doctors have confirmed the information that the mayor has died. They were unable to overcome everything that happened to him, he will rest for eternity with God," said Szumowski.
The attacker, a 27-year-old, has been arrested.
Speaking on the stage before he was arrested, the attacker accused the mayor's former party of putting him in prison, where he said he was tortured.
The attacker was identified by Polish authorities as a 27-year-old named Stefan, who was released last month from prison where he had served 5-1/2 years for a 2014 conviction for attempted bank robbery. His full name has so far been withheld.
PAP said without citing a source that the man has been treated in prison hospital previously for schizophrenia.
The head of the charity Jurek Owsiak resigned soon after the 53-year-old Adamowicz's death was announced.
The British "Guardian" informed about the death of Paweł Adamowicz by publishing his photo taken on Sunday evening when he was giving a speech in Gdańsk, a few minutes before he was attacked. The daily underscored that he died a few hours following a long surgery and that the attach took place "at a charity concert".
"The assassination of Adamowicz, a six-term mayor who often mingled freely with the citizens of his city, sent Poland into shock," wrote the "Guardian" in an online article.
"Guardian" reminded that "Adamowicz, a popular, liberal mayor, had long been considered a hate figure in far-right circles for his vigorous defence of migrants and refugees and LGBT rights".
The authors mentioned that the Polish government sent a plane to London to bring Adamowicz's wife back to Poland.
British state broadcaster the BBC underscored that "moments before the attack, Mr Adamowicz posted a picture on Instagram from the stage of the event, where dozens of people were holding white lights". On Monday, "blood donors lined up to contribute after news of Mr Adamowicz's massive blood loss were reported," wrote the BBC.
"Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung"
"Even a 5-hour-long surgery wasn't enough to save Paweł Adamowicz's life," writes the German daily "Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung", announcing the death of the Mayor of Gdańsk on Monday afternoon.
"FAZ" point out that "it's still unclear" how the attacker managed to stab the mayor despite the presence of security. The authors mentioned that the 27-year-old attacker served a 5-year term in prison for 4 armed robberies.
"Corriere della Sera"
The biggest Italian daily "Corriere della Sera" informed aboutn the death of mayor Adamowicz online stressing that a few hours before the attack he posted photos of himself collecting money for the WOŚP charity.
Mayor Adamowicz died after being stabbed a number of times, wrote the daily.
"Stabbed straight in his heart, the Mayor of Gdańsk used to say: 'A port should always be open for those who come by the sea,'" - "Corriere della Sera" titled the article devoted to Adamowicz.
The author, Maria Serena Natale underscored that Adamowicz was "the face of Gdańsk open to the Baltoc and the world, of Poland fighting for freedom and the one that won't give this freedom up".
Adamowicz was a "symbol of protection of the citizen's rights," wrote "La Repubblica". The author reminded that as thecity's mayor, Adamowicz always took a "progressive standpoint" and supported the rights of minorities. It was also added that Adamowicz was one of the most recognizable Polish mayors.
"La Stampa" mentioned that Adamowicz was a politician "well-known in Poland and abroad as an ardent supporter of the rights of the LGBT community, migrants and refugees". The daily from Turin recalled his words: "I'm an European, so I'm open by nature".
American TV station CNN wrote about the details of the tragedy, also focusing on Paweł Adamowicz. He was pictured as a local councilor "born and raised in Gdańsk", who entered politics in the 1990s. CNN underscored that Adamowicz was killed during the finale of the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity when he "was thanking everyone who had helped raise funds for medical equipment".
Paweł Adamowicz "was known as a progressive voice in a country ruled by a populist, staunchly rightwing government. He was a staunch supporter of LGBT rights, immigrants, and minority groups," wrote the CNN.