Execution of Jews in Bukachivtsi
Father Patrick Desbois
2 Execution site(s)
victims About 250
of place before :
- Memorials : No
Period of occupation: 1941-1944
Kateryna K., born in
1932, says: “I was going to Bukachivtsi and saw the Germans and two
boys standing near the pit. It was during the day, around noon. The
boys were very calm and they did not try to escape. I had just
walked by when I heard the shots. I understood that they were fatal.
It happened on the territory of the distillery factory. They were
the sons of its owner and they lived there.” (Testimony n°2089,
interviewed in Bukachivtsi on June 9th, 2016)
“[…] In October 1942,
the Gestapo and the German soldiers arrived in Bukachivtsi and began
to round-up the population. They arrested 250 people and took them
to Rohatyn. There, those people were loaded into wagons and deported
to Belzec, where they were executed. During the first round-up, 10
people were shot, including Cherch, Ungar, Boksa and others. A month
later, the Gestapo and the German soldiers returned to Bukachivtsi,
and started to round-up and raid the Jewish population, just like
the first time. 550 people were rounded up, brought to Bukachivtsi
station and loaded onto wagons. I was amongst those people. The
train left in the direction of Belzec. After passing Lviv, I managed
to jump off the train, but the others were deported and executed. I
returned to Bukachivtsi where the Jewish population continued to be
exterminated. They were displaced to Rohatyn. During those raids,
350-400 people were brought to Rohatyn where they were shot, and 250
people were shot on the spot.
All my family, my sons, my wife, my sister, my brother-in-law and
their children, my brother and his family, were shot dead in Rohatyn.”
[Deposition of a Jewish survival, Ioiel Salimovych Mandil, born in
1898, taken on February 1st, 1945; RG 22.002.M 7021-73-17]
located 35 km north-west of Ivano-Frankivsk. The first records
of the local Jewish community date back to the 18th Century
According to the census in 1880, the Jewish population numbered
1,115 persons compromising more than a half of total population, but
after a wve of emigration to the USA in the late 19th-early20th
centuries the population dropped. Thus, in 1921, only 649 Jews
remained in Bukachivsti. As a result of the pogrom of 1920,
the Jewish houses and businesses were plundered, several Jews were
killed. In the 1920's and 1930's, branches of various Jewish
parties and organizaitons operated in Bukachivtsi. In 1923 a "Tarbut"
school was opened in the village. At that period tje majority
of Jews lived off small-scale trade or handcraft. In 1931, the
Jewish population increased to about 1,000 persons. On the eve
of the war 780 Jews lived in the village. The village of
Bukachivsti was occupied by the German forces on July 3rd, 1941.
Holocaust by Bullets in figures
Soon after the
occupation the anti-Jewish measures were implemented. The
whole Jewish population was registered and marked with armbands with
the Star of David on it. The curfew and living restrictions
were imposed on the town. Later, a Jewish Council and a Jewish
police were created. They were responsible for arresting and
sending the Jews to labor or extermination camps.
Autumn-winter 1941, an open ghetto was established in the village.
By April 1942, it numbered about 1,303 Jews, including those who
were brought from the nearing villages. All Jews fit to work
were subject to perform forced labor. Due to horrible working
conditions, lack of food, an humiliation many forced laborers died
from hunger or typhus.
deporations started in late September 1942. On September 21st,
230 Jews were deported to the Belzec camp. Dozens of Jews that
tried to hide were killed on the spot in Bukachivtsi.
According to witnesses interviewed by Yahad, several isolated
executions during which a couple of Jews were shot dead. For
example, a local woman interviewed by Yahad, happened to see the
shooting of three Jews who had been hiding in the attic of the
Polish woman. On October25th through October 26th, 1942, a
second deportation of the Jews was organized. This time, about
550 Jews, including several hundred who had previously been
displaced from Burshtyn to Bukachivtsi, were deported to Belzec.
Some 255 Jews were shot on the spot. The Aktion was conducted
by the German Securit Police who arrived from Ternopil. In
January 1943, the Germans resettled 320 remaining Jews to enclosed
ghetto in Rohatyn but they were exterminated shortly after.
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