2 Execution site(s)
Iosyf, born in 1932: “There were 20-30 people in the column. It was around noon, probably in autumn. The shooting site was located about 2 km away from the place they were gathered beforehand. The column was guarded by armed men in black uniforms. We were curious to see what would happen, so with some friends of mine we went to the shooting site. When we arrived, the pit had been filled in. There were two men in civilian clothing there who had covered the pit. We approached a little and saw that the ground was moving. The pit was large and there were no objects nearby. The Jews had been shot with rifles.” (Testimony n°3019U, interviewed in Stary Iarychiv, on December 6, 2021)
Stary Iarychiv is located 15 km (9mi) northwest of Lviv. Part of Eastern Galicia, the village was under the control of different powers at different periods, from the Austro-Hungarian Empire to Poland. In September 1939, Stary Iarychiv was taken over by the Soviet Union as a result of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. The Jewish community was rather big. According to the 1931 census, 926 Jews lived in the village. The Jews lived off small scale trade and handicraft. They had a kahal building and a synagogue, located in the northern part of the village, and a large Jewish cemetery to the northeast. Under the Soviet administration, in September 1939, all private oil businesses were nationalized, as well as the Jewish stores. Craftsmen were forced into cooperatives, and all religious and cultural movements were banned. On the eve of the war, over 2,000 Jews lived in Novy and Stary Iarychiv together.
Stary Iarychiv was occupied by German troops on June 30, 1941. A pogrom was carried out early in the occupation, resulting in a number of victims and Jewish property being plundered and destroyed. The synagogue was burned down. In July 1941 a Jewish council (Judenrat) and Jewish police were created. The Jews were subjected to forced labor, such as road construction. Starting from early 1942, several rounds-up of Jews fit to work were carried out. The detainees were sent to various work camps in the area, such as camp in Vynnyky and Kurovychi. After having been used as free labor, they were killed by bullets. The unfit and weaker Jews were also rounded up in March 1942 and send to the Belzec death camp. In early December 1942, a ghetto was established in Novy Iarychiv. All the remaining Jews from Novy and Stary Iarychiv, as well as from the surrounding villages were moved to the ghetto. In all, more than 2,500 Jews were confined in the ghetto. It was liquidated shorty after, in mid-January 1943. On January 15-16, circa. 1,570 Jews were rounded up and taken to the forest to be shot. The Aktion was conducted by the Security Police Unit and SD from Lviv, assisted by German Gendarmerie and local police. According to another source, circa. 1,000 Jews were taken to be killed at the Jewish cemetery. After the main execution, several isolated killings took place of, mainly targeting Jews who managed to hide but were discovered. Today, the main site where 1,570 Jews were murdered is marked with a memorial.
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