Government at odds with Gdańsk over WWII museums
PR dla Zagranicy
The mayor of Gdańsk has objected to plans announced by the minister of culture to merge two forthcoming museums about World War II in the city.
The construction site of the Museum of World War II in Gdańsk. PAP/Adam Warżawa
Construction of the Museum of World War II began in Gdańsk in August 2012, and the project was supported by the then coalition government led by the Civic Platform party.
However, two months after the Law and Justice party won the 25 October general election, it announced the construction of a second museum, which would be built on Gdańsk's Westerplatte peninsula where WWII began, focusing solely on the events in Poland of 1939.
On Saturday, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Culture Piotr Gliński stated that the museums would be merged.
“The reason for the merger is to ensure effectiveness,” he told the PAP news agency.
“There is no sense in operating two museums in the same city with the same profile,” he added.
However, Mayor of Gdańsk Pawel Adamowicz, a member of the Civc Platform party, has protested against the concept.
“I was very surprised by the decision of the minister of culture to combine the Museum of World War II with the Museum of Westerplatte.
“The city of Gdańsk was involved in the project for the forthcoming museum from the beginning, we provided a donation for this institution - land worth over PLN 53 million.
“I appeal to the minister to adhere to the contract and signed acts,” he added.
Adamowicz and Gliński are due to meet on Tuesday.
The Museum of World War II was due to present the conflict from various angles, covering both Europe, Japan and beyond.
The Museum of Westerplatte and the War of 1939 was supposed to focus on the Nazi Geman attack on the Westerplatte peninsula, as well as the first phase of the war in Poland, and emerging resistance following the country's defeat. (nh/pk)