Earlier parliamentary elections in Poland possible: deputy PM

WARSAW, June 18 (Xinhua) -- The option of shortening the term of the current parliament should be taken into account, according to Poland's deputy Prime Minister and Economy Minister Janusz Piechocinski, who is also the leader of junior coalition partner the Polish People's Party (PSL).

"Unfortunately, it is one of the scenarios that we should seriously consider, but this requires cooperation on the part of both PO (Civic Platform, the ruling coalition party) and PSL, and not only PSL," Janusz Piechocinski told local radio on Wednesday.

The main opposition party Law and Justice (PiS) on Monday urged the government to step down in the wake of a scandal caused by leaked private conversations between Polish top officials, including the central bank head and the interior minister.

The two were alleged to have discussed the central bank's potential economic support for the government to help it defeat PiS in the upcoming parliamentary elections in return for the finance minister's dismissal and an amendment to the law on the central bank.

Rejecting these demands, Prime Minister Donald Tusk, the PO leader, said that the PO-PSL government would continue to rule as long as it had a majority in the parliament.

Tusk and Piechocinski met late Tuesday.

"I believe the situation is particularly serious," Piechocinski told local press after the meeting, adding that he would like the Sejm's (lower house) Special Services Committee to convene next week.

This should be an opportunity for the leaders of all the six parliamentary caucuses to meet and "discuss the situation" following the publication of the secretly taped talks, he said.

Piechocinski admitted that during Tuesday's talk with the prime minister "we discussed the subject of early elections."

Piechocinski also announced that later on Wednesday he would ask President Bronislaw Komorowski for a meeting at which he would like to present his assessment of the situation.