1 Execution site(s)
Valentina U. : "I saw the shooting from a nearby hill. A German found me and thought I was Jewish and took me to the grave, but the priest intervened. He was there to bless the Jews before the shooting." (Eyewitness N°616, interviewed in Mstislavl, on May 1st, 2012)
“On November 1, 1943, in the town of Mstislavl, the German monsters arrested a group of perfectly innocent people, ordered them to undress and go to the execution site, then they made them go down in a prepared grave and covered them with earth.” [Report of the local commission, drawn up in 1944; RG 22.022M/7021-88/45]
Mstislavl is situated 80km (50 miles) east/northeast of Mogilev. In 1939, there were 2,067 Jews living in Mstislavl, which represented almost 20 % of the local population. The German army occupied the town in July 1941. Some Jews managed to flee on the East, although there was no organized official evacuation.
The anti-Jewish measures were carried out by the German Security police, punitive squads and local police. From the very beginning of occupation, all Jews were registered and their houses were marked. All valuables were seized. In early October, they killed 30 elderly Jews. On October 15, 1941, together with the local police, they murdered 850-1.300 Jews (according to different sources).
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