Polish charity head resigns, says threats made

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The head of the popular Polish charity event during which the mayor of Gdansk was fatally stabbed says he is resigning from his position after having received threats for years.

Pawel Adamowicz died Monday after being stabbed on the stage during an annual event for the Great Orchestra of Christmas Charity.

The charity’s head, Jerzy Owsiak, a popular figure known across the country for his energy, said he is resigning as head of management but will continue to cooperate with it.

Owsiak said that for years he has been the target of threats and hate messages, including by some right-wing lawmakers, but that he is not getting any help from the police.

He told a news conference that recently the level of public criticism is “touching on Nazi, fascist language, on threats.”

He said that maybe his resignation would make “let go” the extreme groups and individuals who “have been given a wide space for such activity.”

He apparently meant far-right groups under the current right-wing government.