Poland's Tusk to receive PM nomination this week

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WARSAW, Nov 6 (Reuters) Polish prime minister-in-waiting Donald Tusk said today he would likely be nominated by the president to head the new government on Thursday or Friday.

The handover of power to Tusk's Civic Platform party and its allies following the October. 21 poll began yesterday, when outgoing Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski presented his resignation.

The Platform is set to form a coalition government with the centrist Peasants' Party (PSL).

''Thursday or Friday are the options,'' Tusk told a news conference after a meeting with President Lech Kaczynski, who is the former prime minister's twin brother.

Tusk also confirmed that he would appoint Radek Sikorski as foreign minister in his cabinet.

Sikorski's nomination has faced opposition from the president who has accused him of jeopardising close ties with the United States during his stint as defence minister.

The Kaczynskis dismissed Sikorski from the cabinet in February after he tried to bargain hard with Washington over a planned US missile shield defence system.

After a meeting with the president, Tusk said the president had failed to convince to not appoint Sikorski.

''I respect the president's opinion but I still believe that Sikorski is the best candidate to become foreign minister,'' Tusk told reporters.

Analysts say the president, who has prerogatives in some areas of foreign and defence affairs, may try to block key decisions if Sikorski becomes the foreign minister.

REUTERS NY RK2227

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