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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Polish Intelligence Retained Ties to Moscow After 1989

WARSAW -- Russian spies continued to hold sway over Poland's military intelligence services long after communism fell in 1989, according to a long-awaited government report released Friday.

Even as the country turned from its former Soviet overlords and joined NATO and the European Union, the now defunct Military Intelligence Service, or WSI, maintained close ties with Moscow and allowed Russian spies to work on Polish soil, the report said.

"The WSI was unable to build ... a structure that would not be exposed to [Russian] infiltration," the report said. "They failed to arrest a single Russian spy."

The report said military agents, most of them schooled in Moscow in the Soviet era, kept up ties with their counterparts to the east and acted against the interests of Poland.

In one example, a colonel on a mission to North Korea disobeyed orders by fraternizing with Russian officials. "Against instructions, he maintained close contacts at the Russian embassy ... including numerous intimate contacts with women provided by Russian intelligence," the report said.

Last year, Poland's conservative-led government shut down the WSI, which it blamed for building a "web" of former communists and corrupt businessmen that it said controlled Poland.

The report said the service "recruited leading editors at television stations ... and controlled national newspapers" in order to sway public opinion and influence politics.

It also infiltrated the then-political party of Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski and his twin brother Lech, Poland's president, who spent most of the 1990s in the opposition.