1 Execution site(s)
Maria Zh., born in 1930: “The shooting was conducted in the forest outside Haina. I wanted to go and take a look, but my parents didn’t let me go. I was told to stay at home because it was too dangerous. Shortly after the shooting, five or six Jews came to see my father. My father had a very good relationship with the Jews. These Jews wanted to escape to Poland. So my father gave them some food and took them outside the village. After the war, one girl, whose name was Telma, came back to see my father to thank him for his help.” (Witness n°996B, interviewed in Haina, on September 25, 2019)
“[...] On August 30, 1941, a mass execution of the Jewish population of Lohoisk took place in the place called "Ivanovshchina" located 1,450m from Lohoisk in the direction of Haina, 150m from the road. The shooting was carried out in an atrocious manner as described below. The Jews were taken away in groups from Lohoisk: in the first group were women with infants and teenagers; in the second, middle-aged and elderly women; in the third, men. Anyone who could not walk (sick, elderly) were loaded onto the trucks and transported to the place of execution. When they arrived at the place of execution, the Jews were first stripped down to their underwear and then forced to lie face down in a large pit that had been prepared. Then they were shot with automatic weapons. In one day, 1,200 people were shot in this way. After this bloody massacre, the Germans, with the help of the police, rounded up the Jews in hiding, locked them in a room and, as they went along, transported them by truck to the same execution site. During the years 1941, 1942 and 1943, the Germans also took other innocent people there. In all, 300 people of other nationalities (Russians and Belarusians) including 18 POWs were buried there.” [Act drawn up by Soviet State Extraordinary Commission (ChGK) on October 8, 1944; GARF: Fond 7021, opis 87, delo 8]
Lohoisk is a village located 40 km (25mi) northeast of Minsk. From the 13th century it was part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. As a result of the Second Partition of Poland in 1793, the town became part of the Russian Empire. The Jewish community in Lohoisk dates back to the 18th century. In 1890, 685 Jews lived in the town out of the 1180 inhabitants. The majority of them lived off trade and handicraft. During the Soviet period, a Yiddish school was opened in the town. In January 1939, 864 Jews lived in Lohoisk, accounting for 25 per cent of the total population.
Lohoisk was occupied by German forces in July 1941. The Jews continued to live in their houses until late August 1941. On August 30, 1941, a murder operation was conducted. On this day, all the Jews from Haina were gathered at the central square of each town and divided into three groups. In the first group were women with infants and teenagers; in the second, middle-aged and elderly women; in the third, men. The column was taken to the ‘Ivanovskiy’ quarry, where they were shot in small groups. Before being shot the Jews were forced to strip down to their underwear, climb down into the pit and lie facing the ground. That day, circa. 1,200 Jews were murdered. Isolated shootings continued throughout 1941, 1942 and 1943. In all, 300 people, Russians and Belarusians, including 18 POWs, were murdered there.
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