At the end of May's wave of strikes the government tried to get in touch with Lech Walesa and his people hoping that the opposition's side would agree to a meeting. At general Kiszczak's request Sila-Nowicki arrived in Gdansk and tried to persuade Walesa to write a letter proposing negotiations. Walesa did not agree to it. In August, when the wave of strikes appeared once again, the idea of an agreement came back. The authorities threatened that they would use force. Simultaneously there were carried on negotiations between KIK members (Andrzej Stelmachowski) and secretary of KC PZPR Jozef Czyrk. On August 26th during VIII meeting of KC there were presented the results of the negotiations. Its participants decided to start talks with the opposition.
|The round table negotiations.|
On August 31st general Kiszczak met Lech Walesa in Warsaw. In the news it was presented as a chance for the negotions of "round table". Walesa convinced strikers to return to work. On September 16th second Kiszczak - Walesa meeting took place, in which twenty people from government and opposition took part. They deciced that the round table negotiations would start in the middle of October.
However negotiations did not begin in October. During August strikes governmental work unions (OPZZ) asked the marshal of seym to call a sitting. On September 6th OPZZ accepted the act, which demanded dismissal of Messner's government. His government was dismissed on September 19th during the seym session. On September 27th Mieczyslaw Rakowski was chosen for a post of prime minister. On October 28th during his first press conference Rakowski claimed that Polish people were not interested in the round table negotiations. Furthermore, he said that the government would pay attention to economic matters. A few days later he announced that the Gdansk Shipyard would be closed. Meanwhile the authorities lost the rest of support in people' minds. In that atmosphere it was decided that there should be a political debate between Walesa and Miodowicz (the leader of OPZZ) on TV. The debate was on November 30th and after it nobody had any doubts that Walesa had won it. The authorities realized that they could not postpone negotitions with the opposition.
In 1988-1989 there was X meeting of KC PZPR consisting of two parts. The first part of the sitting was held on December 20th - 21st. Some personal changes were approved. After it Rakowski annonced that he was for agreement with the opposition. The second part of the meeting was on January 16 - 17th. Then decisions about dismissal of generals were taken: Jaruzelski, Kiszczak, Siwicki and also prime minister Rakowski. The way to round table negotiations was open.
|The article about round table negotiations.|
The date of first sitting of round table was fixed on February 6th. Before it, in Magdalenka near Warsaw there were negotiations between representatives of the authorities and opposition. On September 11th in Gdansk in the church of saint Brygida there was a meeting of sixty people, who decided that the legalization of Solidarity had to be accepted before the round table negotiations. This condition was approved during X meeting. Beside the legalization of Solidarity it was necessary to change a way of Polish country's functioning. Also a lot of changes in economy were to be introduced. On December 18th Citizen's Committee (Komitet Obywatelski) was founded. During the meetings in Magdalenka the principants were talking about the topics of round table negotiations, including representatives of OPZZ to the sitting, founding the post of president, also about how many people would take part in the round table and its division among parties.
The sitting started on February 6th 1989. Some of the mopre important decisions were taken. 60% of all seats in Parliament were assigned to coalition of PZPR, SD and ZSL, 5% to catholics (PAX, PZKS and Unia Chrzescijansko-Demokratyczna) and the rest- 35% - to the opposition. The date of the election was chosen to be June 4th and 18th. Opposition suggested creating senate, to which representatives would be chosen in general elections.
|The article about round table negotiations.|
During the next round of negotiations new problems appeared. Once again an informal meetings in Magdalenka helped to achieve the compromise. On April 5th both sides came to an agreement. However a bit later there was a new conflict with Alfred Miodowicz. Broadcasts from the sittings of the round table were interrupted. They were renewed and people could see only its ending.
At the end of negotiations in a signed document the authorities agreed to the legalization of NSZZ Solidarity, democratic election to senate and partially democratic to seym. It was decided that the president would be chosen by Zgromadzenie Narodowe - connected senate and seym (Parliament). The date of election was fixed on June 1989.