Home > 106th Congressional Bills > S.Con.Res. 131 (rs) Commemorating the 20th anniversary of the workers' strikes in Poland that led to the creation of the independent trade union Solidarnosc, and for other purposes. [Reported in Senate] ...

S.Con.Res. 131 (rs) Commemorating the 20th anniversary of the workers' strikes in Poland that led to the creation of the independent trade union Solidarnosc, and for other purposes. [Reported in Senate] ...


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106th CONGRESS
  2d Session
S. CON. RES. 131


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            October 12, 2000

          Referred to the Committee on International Relations

_______________________________________________________________________

                         CONCURRENT RESOLUTION


 
 Commemorating the 20th anniversary of the workers' strikes in Poland 
 that led to the creation of the independent trade union Solidarnosc, 
                        and for other purposes.

Whereas, in July and August of 1980, Polish workers went on strike to protest 
        communist oppression and demand greater political freedom;
Whereas, in the shipyards of Gdansk and Szczecin, workers' committees 
        coordinated these strikes and ensured that the strikes were peaceful and 
        orderly and did not promote acts of violence;
Whereas workers' protests against the communist authorities in Poland were 
        supported by the Polish people and the international community of 
        democracies;
Whereas, on August 30 and 31 of 1980, the communist government of the People's 
        Republic of Poland yielded to the 21 demands of the striking workers, 
        including the release of all political prisoners, including Jacek Kuron 
        and Adam Michnik, the broadcasting of religious services on television 
        and radio, and the right to establish independent trade unions;
Whereas from these agreements emerged Solidarnosc, the first independent trade 
        union in the communist bloc, led by Lech Walesa, an electrician from 
        Gdansk;
Whereas Solidarnosc and its 10,000,000 members became a great social movement in 
        Poland that was committed to promoting fundamental human rights, 
        democracy, and Polish independence;
Whereas, during its first congress in 1981, Solidarnosc issued a proclamation 
        urging workers in Soviet-bloc countries to resist their communist 
        governments and to struggle for freedom and democracy;
Whereas the communist government of Poland introduced martial law in December 
        1981 in an attempt to block the growing political and social influence 
        of the Solidarnosc movement;
Whereas Solidarnosc remained a powerful and political force that resisted the 
        efforts of Poland's communist government to suppress the desire of the 
        Polish people for freedom, democracy, and independence from the Soviet 
        Union;
Whereas, in February 1989, the communist government of Poland agreed to conduct 
        roundtable talks with Solidarnosc that led to elections to the National 
        Assembly in June of that year, in which nearly all open seats were won 
        by candidates supported by Solidarnosc;
Whereas, on August 19, 1989, Solidarity leader Tadeusz Mazowiecki was asked to 
        serve as Prime Minister of Poland and on September 12, 1989, the Polish 
        Sejm voted to approve Prime Minister Mazowiecki and his cabinet, 
        Poland's first noncommunist government in 4 decades;
Whereas, on December 9, 1990, Lech Walesa was elected President of Poland;
Whereas the Solidarnosc movement, by its courage and example, initiated 
        political transformations in other countries in Central and Eastern 
        Europe and thereby initiated the collapse of the Soviet Bloc in 1989; 
        and
Whereas, since the time Poland freed itself from communist domination, Polish-
        American relations have transformed from partnership to alliance, a 
        transition marked by Poland's historic accession to the North Atlantic 
        Treaty Organization in March 1999: Now, therefore, be it
    Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), 
That Congress--
    (1) commemorates the 20th anniversary of the workers' strikes in 
Poland that led to the creation of the independent trade union 
Solidarnosc; and
    (2) honors the leaders of Poland who risked and lost their lives in 
attempting to restore democracy in their country and to return Poland 
to the democratic community of nations.

            Passed the Senate October 11 (legislative day, September 
      22), 2000.

            Attest:

                                                    GARY SISCO,

                                                             Secretary.

Pages: 1

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