1 Execution site(s)
Tatyana Zh., born in 1925 : “The shooting of the town’s Jews took place at the entrance of Staryye, near the road to Slutsk. There were several antitank trenches there. The weather was beautiful that day. While I was working on the road, I saw a covered truck arriving from the town. There were already Germans at the site when the truck got there. The Jews - adults and children - got off the truck all at once. They were crying and screaming. The Jews were immediately led down to the edge of the pit and killed by 2 Germans who had a standing machine gun on the ground. The Germans had dogs. They barked and were sometimes released to bite the Jews during the shooting. The victims were terrorized by them. At the end of the shooting, the whole pit was filled in.” (Eyewitness N°761, interviewed in Slobodka, on May 20, 2014)
“After the shooting, the cleaning of the Jewish camp took a long time. I have to say that I, as well as people of my unit, went to the Jewish camp after the Aktion. We saw that they had thrown the furniture, clothing, everything tangible outside. The reason for our visit in this camp was that some of our colleagues wanted to get back the clothes that they had given to Jewish tailors to repair." [Testimony of Erich K. on October 27, 1967, during the Berlin trial, B162-3314 p.16]
Staryye Dorogi is a small town and district center, situated 100 km south of Minsk. In 1939, there were more than 1000 Jews living there, making up 28% of the total population. There were 2 synagogues and several Jewish schools.
Prior to the Germans’ arrival during the summer of 1941, some Jews managed to escape on their own or by train. There was a ghetoo, fenced in and guarded, on Kirov street, where there was a Jewish school and several houses.
During the first major Aktion, a group of Jews was forced to swim into the river and shot by the Germans when they were in the water, but little is known about this event.
On January 19, 1942, the Jews were loaded into trucks outside of the village to go to a place known as Kacharka. According to an eyewitness interviewed by Yahad, the mass grave was an anti-tank ditch. But according to other sources, it was a sand quarry. They were shot by an SS detachment assisted by local police. Other categories of victims, such as POWs, were also shot at this location.
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