Lech Kaczynski was to step down from his job as mayor of
Warsaw on Thursday, a day before his inauguration as head of
the Polish state.
The socially conservative Kaczynski won a
presidential runoff on October 23 on promises to fight
corruption, remove former communists from positions of
influence, and bring economic growth while protecting the
On Friday, he replaces President Aleksander
Kwasniewski, a former communist who has served two
five-year terms, the most allowed by law.
Kaczynski, the mayor of Warsaw since November
2002, has also won support after striking a strong
nationalist tone. He supported the opening of a museum
dedicated to the 1944 Warsaw uprising against Nazi
occupation and backed 60th anniversary celebrations of
the uprising in 2004. He also banned gay rights
parades in the capital, drawing criticism from
international human rights groups.
His identical twin brother, Jaroslaw Kaczynski,
heads the governing Law and Justice Party. (AP)