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Polish leader Edward Gierek will step down as Communist Party chief soon -- though "not just yet." As soon as things calm down in Warsaw after the recent worker strikes, Gierek will bow out. He wants to leave "with honor" at "a good moment," sources say.

It's publicly denied that Gierek offered to resign during the strike crisis. But one insider confides that Gierek did offer to make way for someone else at one point. His Politburo colleagues persuaded him to stay -- at least until the crisis eased.

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When he does go, Gierek may succeed Henryk Jablonski as head of state.m

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