Poland's president Lech Kaczynski on Monday dismissed four government ministers who belong to junior coalition partners, removing those parties from the Cabinet before expected early elections.
Lech Kaczynski fired two Cabinet members from the right-wing League of Polish Families - Education Minister Roman Giertych and Maritime Economy Minister Rafal Wiechecki - as well as two from the populist agrarian Self-Defense Party - Labor Minister Anna Kalata and Construction Minister Andrzej Aumiller.
They were replaced with members or allies of the Law and Justice Party, which leads the government.
During a ceremony in Warsaw attended by both Kaczynski and his twin brother, Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the prime minister praised the replacements, saying they are well prepared for their posts and would "strengthen the Cabinet."
He said the shakeup marks the end of the fractious coalition and reiterated that early elections were on the horizon.
"There is going to be a shortened term and elections not far off," Prime Minister Kaczynski said.
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969