Russians and Poles try to identify crash bodies
Russian and Polish investigators struggled on Monday to identify the remains of nearly 100 people killed in a weekend plane crash in which Poland's president and many other top officials perished.
President Lech Kaczynski's coffin returned home on Sunday to a Warsaw plunged into deep mourning and awash with flowers, candles and red and white national flags, but the remains of the 95 other victims were sent to Moscow for identification, AP reported.
Kaczynski's aging Polish government Tupolev plane crashed in thick fog near Smolensk airport in western Russia on Saturday, reportedly after the pilot ignored traffic controllers' advice not to land.
While the deaths of military leaders and leading opposition figures are a huge blow to the political and military elite, the crash poses no threat to political and economic stability in Poland, a country of 38 million people firmly anchored in the European Union and the U.S.-led NATO alliance. In Poland, the government, not the president, decide
In Poland, the government, not the president, decides policy, though the head of state can veto laws. From the government, only three deputy ministers were on the plane.
Financial markets largely shrugged off the crash on Monday, with the zloty currency and stocks flat or slightly firmer. They were awaiting a decision on who would replace Slawomir Skrzypek, the governor of the Polish central bank who was also killed.
Acting President Bronislaw Komorowski said on Monday he would act quickly to name a new governor. The bank's Monetary Policy Council was also due to meet at 5 a.m. ET to discuss the situation.