Poland's communist authorities today accused the independent Solidarity trade union of interfering in the internal affairs of other Soviet Bloc countries by sending a message of support to free trade unionists in Eastern Europe.
A statement read on nationwide television news said that the Solidarity resolution, which was passed almost unanimously at the union's first national congress on Tuesday, could damage Poland's relations with its Soviet Bloc neighbors. The sharp attack reflected official concern here at the breaking of yet another taboo by the independent labor union.
Until now, one of the main arguments of Polish officials in defending the emergence of Solidarity was that Poland--with its powerful Roman Catholic Church and independent peasantry--should be regarded as a special case within the Soviet Bloc and therefore allowed to go its own way. This, it is believed here, has been a key factor in Soviet restraint.
The strength of the argument, however, depends on the restriction of free trade unions to Poland. If the rest of Eastern Europe were to be infected by the same virus, the Kremlin might view events here in a very different light.
The Solidarity resolution, in expressing support for "those of you who have entered the difficult road of struggle for a free trade union movement," also voiced the hope that free trade unionists throughout the Soviet Bloc would be able to meet soon to exchange experiences.
The television statement--a preview of an editorial due to be published in Thursday's edition of the official Communist Party newspaper, Trybuna Ludu--described these phrases as "a clear call for change in the existing social-political structures of other socialist countries." Solidarity was declaring itself ready to cooperate in the creation of similar organizations elsewhere in Eastern Europe.
This constituted "an attempt to interfere in the socio-political life of our fraternal allies," the statement added.
Over the past few years, there have been scattered attempts in Eastern Europe to set up independent unions. But, except in Poland, none has succeeded and many free trade unionists are now in prison or under close police supervision.
The authorities elsewhere in Eastern Europe have taken strict precautions to prevent any linkup between organized labor and dissident intellectuals -- the mix that proved so potent in Poland last summer.
The Trybuna Ludu editorial said Solidarity was already viewed with deep mistrust by other socialist countries who acted as guarantors of "Poland's independent existence" and provided considerable economic aid. The Solidarity appeal could deepen this mistrust and create additional difficulties in Poland's relations with the rest of the Soviet Bloc.
The editorial said that if Poles wanted to solve their own problems for themselves, they should refrain from interfering in the life of the surrounding world. Any other stand proved a lack of "elementary realism."
As the Solidarity congress went into its fifth day, an attempt was made by some delegates to delete a clause in the union's statutes acknowledging the "leading role of the Communist Party" in Poland. But the move was strongly opposed by Solidarity leader Lech Walesa and it appeared unlikely to succeed.
The inclusion of the clause was part of a delicate compromise reached between striking workers and the government last year when independent unions were legalized for the first time ever in a communist state.
Other delegates, from the Warsaw region, called for the holding of free elections to parliament. "The road to national sovereignty leads through democratic elections of representative bodies," a draft of their proposal released to reporters said.
The next parliamentary elections are not due to take place until 1984, but elections to provincial bodies are scheduled for early next year.