Poland's deputy prime minister indicated that martial law could continue in Poland for a few more years. In an interview with the Japanese daily Asahi Shimbun, Mieczyslaw Rakowski said no date had been set for lifting martial law and that it was not right to link the issue with the visit next month of Pope John Paul II. In Poland itself, the government ruled out granting the Pope's request that political prisoners be granted amnesty before his visit.
Meanwhile, the Washington Post reported that the US and NATO were considering easing sanctions against Poland. Quoting informed sources, the newspaper said the West was discussing gradually lifting sanctions, with each step conditional on relaxation by the Polish government.