Polish mayor stabbed during charity event

Mayor of the city of Gdansk in critical condition after being stabbed during charity event.

Ben Ariel ,

Emergency responders and police officers at scenf of Gdansk stabbing
Emergency responders and police officers at scenf of Gdansk stabbing

A knife-wielding assailant on Sunday stabbed the mayor of the Polish port city of Gdansk in front of hundreds of people at a charity event, police and media said, according to AFP.

Paramedics resuscitated the mayor, 53-year-old Pawel Adamowicz, at the scene before taking him to hospital.

A doctor working for the regional authorities, Jerzy Karpinski, described the mayor's condition as "very serious".

A video recording of the attack posted on YouTube showed the attacker bursting onto the podium.

After stabbing the mayor, he seized the microphone and claimed to have been wrongly jailed by the previous centrist government of the Civic Platform (PO) and tortured.

"That's why Adamowicz dies," the attacker said, according to AFP. He was quickly apprehended by security guards and arrested by police.

The Civic Platform had supported Adamowicz's re-election in 2018 municipal elections.

The attack took place on the podium at a fundraiser for the purchase of medical equipment.

Adamowicz underwent surgery, said deputy mayor Piotry Grzelak.

A Gdansk police spokesman said the detained man was a 27-year-old who lived in the city.

EU President Donald Tusk, Poland's President Andrzej Duda and Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki immediately expressed their concern and support for Adamowicz.

"The attack on the life and health of the mayor of Gdansk must be firmly condemned," Morawiecki said on Twitter.

"Despite differences in political opinion, I am unconditionally with him and his relatives.... I pray for his health and recovery," Duda added on Twitter.