Polish people voted for a free Poland on June 4, 1989 - president

Thirty one years ago, on June 4, 1989, Poland held its first partially free elections under a deal reached by the then communist authorities and the opposition. Ireneusz Sobieszczuk/PAP

President Andrzej Duda stated on Twitter on Thursday that on June 4, 1989, the Polish people voted in solidarity for an independent Poland, and underlined that solidarity has always been a topical value.

The president also announced that he had filed a draft law envisaging a solidarity benefit designed to counteract the negative effects of the coronavirus epidemic.

Thirty one years ago, on June 4, 1989, Poland held its first partially free elections under a deal reached by the then communist authorities and the opposition. The victory of Solidarity (Poland's first free trade union - PAP) opened a new epoch in Poland's history and influenced the process of the fall of communism in Central Europe.

Referring to the draft he had filed the president wrote that it was designed to help people in need. "Actions, not words," he wrote on Twitter.

In accordance with the draft, a solidarity benefit will be offered for a maximum of three months in the period from June 1, 2020 to August 31, 2020, and will amount to PLN 1,400 (EUR 311) a month. It will be granted to people who lost their job after March 31, 2020. The Sejm (lower house) is planned to debate the bill on Thursday.