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19 Dec, 2021 09:26

Polish politician told female colleague to sleep with Ukrainian visitor

Polish politician told female colleague to sleep with Ukrainian visitor

A Polish politician has spoken out over claims she was pressured by a colleague to sleep with a visiting official from Lvov during a banquet with a Ukrainian delegation, prompting calls for him to stand down from his post.

Local media reported on Friday that Alicja Szczepańska, a councilor in the southern Polish city of Krakow, was left outraged after the assembly’s deputy chairman, Sławomir Pietrzyk, insinuated that she should “pay for services in kind,” and attempted to push her to jump into bed with a fellow guest at the opulent bash held earlier this month.

The woman told Polish news outlet Onet on Thursday that she found her fellow politician’s efforts to solicit sex for the Ukrainian delegate unacceptable, adding that he had made suggestive remarks about her body. Szczepańska has since complained to the head of the city’s administration, insisting she is taking action in a way “every person who is subjected to sexual harassment and discrimination should do in this situation.”

Polish politician told female colleague to sleep with Ukrainian visitor

The councilor said, however, that she does not feel she is a victim, as using this terminology creates a stigma towards people who have been molested and harassed.

The scandal sparked outcry from councilors and women’s rights groups, with some demanding Pietrzyk’s resignation. Rafał Komarewicz, the chairman of the ‘Friendly Krakow’ club, which the politician is a member of, condemned him over the “very serious allegations,” adding that if events transpired as Szczepańska claims, consequences are inevitable.

Pietrzyk took to Facebook to issue a public apology last week. “I apologize to Councilor Szczepańska for my use of unfortunate phrases during dinner with the delegation from Lvov, which were taken as an insult,” he wrote, saying he is sorry his words caused “pain and sorrow.”