In an attempt to break the political deadlock in Poland, the country's powerful Roman Catholic Church outlined its proposals today for a new national agreement between the Communist authorities and the suspended Solidarity trade union.
The proposals were contained in a document drawn up by a social council of lay Catholics appointed by the Catholic primate, Archbishop Jozef Glemp. The document said that a basis for an understanding would be an amnesty for Solidarity activists convicted of crimes under martial-law decrees, the reinstatement of dismissed workers and the scheduling of local government elections earlier postponed until 1984.
At the same time, the church sought to make its proposals more palatable for the martial-law authorities by accepting that Solidarity should bear some of the blame for Poland's political and economic crisis. It said any national agreement should recognize "historical realities"--a code phrase for Poland's position within the Soviet Bloc.
The social council's report, which was distributed to all Poland's bishops, was seen here as an attempt by Glemp to strengthen the church's mediating role. Catholic leaders have been disturbed by the lack of progress toward national reconciliation four months after the military takeover.
While the martial-law chief, Gen. Wojciech Jaruzelski, repeatedly has stated his commitment to reform, there is no evidence that he is prepared to relax his political grip. Some recent events, including the dismissal of the democratically elected rector of Warsaw University last week, suggest that there could be a further tightening in ideological controls.
Liberal-minded supporters of the government, however, insist that Jaruzelski is capable of another policy turn in the months ahead once he has demonstrated the strength of his position. The church's latest proposals are designed to make such a change of course easier for Jaruzelski.
With the economy gradually disintegrating, Glemp reportedly believes it is the church's duty to help defuse social tensions that could lead to widescale unrest. The Catholic document described "the overwhelming majority of youth" as "opposition-oriented" and said there was a danger of a vicious cycle of terrorism and repression.
The document said that any new social agreement should resemble the one signed in Gdansk in August 1980 between the government and striking workers. Under the Gdansk accords, the Communist state promised for the first time to recognize free trade unions, restrict censorship and release political detainees.
The primate's council said that a new agreement would only be possible if society were convinced that the hopes released in 1980 had not finally been dashed. Representatives of Solidarity, as well as the church, should be allowed to take part in negotiations for a new agreement, according to the proposal.
While Solidarity sources insist that there have been some preliminary contacts between the two sides, the government has given no sign yet that it is prepared to negotiate with the union's presidium.
Church officials recognize the difficulties in negotiating a new social agreement. The document released today predicted opposition to the idea from "groups within the ruling camp that rely on force only and reject the idea of a compromise with society." The document said there could also be opposition from Solidarity supporters bitterly critical of the government's use of force and determined not to make any concessions as long as martial law remains in force.
Meanwhile, the government released economic statistics for March showing some improvement in industrial production in relation to February but a dismal performance overall. Production was 10 percent lower in the first quarter of 1982 than the same period last year. Housing construction was 39.2 percent lower, meat purchases from farmers 10 percent lower.
Largely because of higher coal production, Polish exports to Soviet Bloc countries were up 18.7 percent in March compared with March 1981. Exports to capitalist countries were reported to be up 13.5 percent.