14/01/2019 13:52 GMT | Updated 14/01/2019 14:34 GMT

Pawel Adamowicz, Polish Mayor Stabbed On Stage At Charity Event, Dies

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The Polish mayor who was attacked while on stage at a charity event on Sunday night has died.

Pawel Adamowicz, who had served as mayor of the city since 1998, was stabbed in the heart and abdomen by an ex-convict who rushed onto the stage with a knife.

The man shouted out at the crowd gathered at the annual fundraiser that the attack was an act of revenge against a political party Adamowicz had belonged to.

The politician collapsed in front of the audience and was treated on the state by emergency doctors, before being transported to the Medical University of Gdansk, where he underwent five hours of surgery.

According to the Polish Press Agency, doctors were hoping to keep him alive long enough for his wife to travel from London to see him, but he passed away on Monday before she arrived.

Polish blood donors have come forward in droves in a bid to save his life. TV footage showed people queueing up to donate blood in the northern port city. Some said they were given time off work to help save Adamowicz. A rally against violence has also been planned.

After the attack, the assailant shouted from the stage that he had been wrongly imprisoned under a previous national government led by Civic Platform, the party to which the mayor once belonged.

Police said the suspect was a 27-year-old who had been recently released from prison, where he had served a term for bank robberies.

A police spokesman, Mariusz Ciarka, said the attacker appeared to have mental health problems and gained access to the area with a media badge. It is unclear how he acquired the credential.

He was arrested and is under investigation.

TVN footage showed Adamowicz on stage with a sparkler in hand, telling the audience that it had been a “wonderful day” before the attacker came towards him.

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