Swiss mourn Polish ex-minister Geremek

Switzerland has paid tribute to former Polish Foreign Minister Bronislaw Geremek, who has been killed in a car crash in his native country.

This content was published on July 13, 2008 - 18:32

Geremek was president of the pro-European Jean Monnet Foundation in Lausanne. He was widely respected in Switzerland, the foreign ministry said.

He was a "personality who was appreciated by everyone," said foreign ministry spokesman Jean-Philippe Jeannerat. The politician entertained excellent relations with Bern when foreign minister and was held in great esteem by the diplomatic corps, added Jeannerat.

Geremek, 76, was one of the key advisers to Lech Walesa, the Solidarity union leader who helped topple communist rule in Poland. He was foreign minister from 1997-2000 and was a member of the European Parliament.

He had held the presidency at the Jean Monnet Foundation, named after one of the architects of European unity, since 2006.

The foreign ministry said that Geremek's death was "an inestimable loss to the foundation and to all those who were working towards making a Europe of peace, democracy and prosperity".

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