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Polish Court Orders Resumption of Jaruzelski's Martial Law Trial


A Polish appeals court has ordered the resumption of the trial of communist-era leader Wojciech Jaruzelski, charged with imposing martial law in 1981 as part of a deadly crackdown on pro-democracy activists.

The Warsaw appeals court Monday overturned a lower court order suspending the trial while prosecutors gather more evidence. The May 14 ruling included orders for interviews with former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev.

In today's ruling, the court said evidence already gathered is sufficient. No new trial date has been announced.

Prosecutors last year formally charged the 84-year-old General Jaruzelski and other former government officials with "communist crimes" for the martial law declaration against the Solidarity labor movement. Prosecutors say the crackdown, in which more than 100 people were killed, violated Polish law.

The general has said he declared martial law to avoid a potential bloodbath that was expected if Soviet troops had intervened to crush Polish dissent.

Legal proceedings against the general have stalled repeatedly in the past decade, as courts dropped charges against him linked to the crackdown.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.


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