Khatyn Massacre Memorial

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Seventy years ago, on March 22, 1943, the Nazis destroyed the village of Khatyn in Belarus, killing most of the residents. The Khatyn Memorial Center in the Vitebsk Region symbolizes the nation’s memory.

Seventy years ago, on March 22, 1943, the Nazis destroyed the village of Khatyn in Belarus, killing most of the residents. The Khatyn Memorial Center in the Vitebsk Region symbolizes the nation’s memory.

© RIA Novosti . Egor Eremov / Go to the photo bankSeventy years ago, on March 22, 1943, the Nazis destroyed the village of Khatyn in Belarus, killing most of the residents. The Khatyn Memorial Center in the Vitebsk Region symbolizes the nation’s memory.
Khatyn: Symbol of National Memory - Sputnik International
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Seventy years ago, on March 22, 1943, the Nazis destroyed the village of Khatyn in Belarus, killing most of the residents. The Khatyn Memorial Center in the Vitebsk Region symbolizes the nation’s memory.
© RIA Novosti . Ivan Rudnev / Go to the photo bankEarlier on the day of that tragedy, Soviet partisans fired on a Nazi convoy not far from Khatyn and killed a German officer. The Nazis ordered local squads to retaliate by surrounding the village of Khatyn. They herded the local residents into a shed and set it on fire. The Nazis mowed down everyone who tried to escape with machine guns.
Khatyn: Symbol of National Memory - Sputnik International
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Earlier on the day of that tragedy, Soviet partisans fired on a Nazi convoy not far from Khatyn and killed a German officer. The Nazis ordered local squads to retaliate by surrounding the village of Khatyn. They herded the local residents into a shed and set it on fire. The Nazis mowed down everyone who tried to escape with machine guns.
© RIA Novosti . Alexandr Zemlyanichenko / Go to the photo bankIn all, 149 people, including 75 children under 16, were killed. The village was looted and burned to the ground. Grigory Vasyura, Headquarters Chief with the 118th Police Battalion, commanded those who perpetrated the massacre. In November-December 1986, Vasyura stood trial in Minsk, was found guilty of his crimes and sentenced to death.
Khatyn: Symbol of National Memory - Sputnik International
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In all, 149 people, including 75 children under 16, were killed. The village was looted and burned to the ground. Grigory Vasyura, Headquarters Chief with the 118th Police Battalion, commanded those who perpetrated the massacre. In November-December 1986, Vasyura stood trial in Minsk, was found guilty of his crimes and sentenced to death.
© RIA Novosti . Драчев / Go to the photo bankSix people survived the tragedy. Three children, Volodya and Sonya Yaskevich and Sasha Zhelobkovich, managed to evade the Nazis. Two children from among those inside the shed, Viktor Zhelobkovich and Anton Baranovsky, also survived. Photo: From left: Viktor Zhelobkovich, Sofia Klimovich (nee Yaskevich) and Vladimir Yaskevich.
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Six people survived the tragedy. Three children, Volodya and Sonya Yaskevich and Sasha Zhelobkovich, managed to evade the Nazis. Two children from among those inside the shed, Viktor Zhelobkovich and Anton Baranovsky, also survived. Photo: From left: Viktor Zhelobkovich, Sofia Klimovich (nee Yaskevich) and Vladimir Yaskevich.
© RIA Novosti . Ю. Иванов / Go to the photo bankIosif Kaminsky, 56, the village blacksmith, was the only adult to survive the massacre. Kaminsky (photo) who suffered burns and injuries regained consciousness late at night after Nazi punitive squads left the village. But he was to suffer another life-changing shock: Kaminsky found his dying son among the bodies of his fellow villagers. The boy, who was mortally wounded in the stomach, and who also sustained serious burns, died in his father’s arms.
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Iosif Kaminsky, 56, the village blacksmith, was the only adult to survive the massacre. Kaminsky (photo) who suffered burns and injuries regained consciousness late at night after Nazi punitive squads left the village. But he was to suffer another life-changing shock: Kaminsky found his dying son among the bodies of his fellow villagers. The boy, who was mortally wounded in the stomach, and who also sustained serious burns, died in his father’s arms.
© RIA Novosti . Yakov Berliner / Go to the photo bankThe Unvanquished six-meter bronze sculpture depicting the tragic moment in the life of Iosif Kaminsky stands in the center of the memorial.
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The Unvanquished six-meter bronze sculpture depicting the tragic moment in the life of Iosif Kaminsky stands in the center of the memorial.
© RIA Novosti . Evgeniy Koktysh / Go to the photo bankIn all, 628 Belarusian villages, including Khatyn, were razed to the ground during World War II.
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In all, 628 Belarusian villages, including Khatyn, were razed to the ground during World War II.
© RIA Novosti . Юрий Абрамочкин / Go to the photo bankIn January 1966, the Soviet authorities decided to build the Khatyn Memorial Center to commemorate hundreds of Belarusian villages that were destroyed by Nazis. Photo: US President Richard Nixon visits the Khatyn Memorial Center.
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In January 1966, the Soviet authorities decided to build the Khatyn Memorial Center to commemorate hundreds of Belarusian villages that were destroyed by Nazis. Photo: US President Richard Nixon visits the Khatyn Memorial Center.
© RIA Novosti . U. Ivanov / Go to the photo bankThe memorial is laid out as the former village was. The Unvanquished bronze sculpture stands in the center of the memorial. A black slab-roof marks the location of the granary where Khatyn residents were burned. The common grave of massacre victims can be found nearby.
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The memorial is laid out as the former village was. The Unvanquished bronze sculpture stands in the center of the memorial. A black slab-roof marks the location of the granary where Khatyn residents were burned. The common grave of massacre victims can be found nearby.
© RIA Novosti . Drachev / Go to the photo bankEach of the 26 incinerated homes is marked by a village-hut foundation containing a chimney-shaped obelisk with a bell. The bells ring every hour on the hour.
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Each of the 26 incinerated homes is marked by a village-hut foundation containing a chimney-shaped obelisk with a bell. The bells ring every hour on the hour.
© RIA Novosti . Evgeniy Koktysh / Go to the photo bankThe Cemetery of Villages containing urns with the earth from 185 villages, which were burned down and never rebuilt, is located behind the memorial homes.
Khatyn: Symbol of National Memory - Sputnik International
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The Cemetery of Villages containing urns with the earth from 185 villages, which were burned down and never rebuilt, is located behind the memorial homes.
© RIA Novosti . Ruslan Krivobok / Go to the photo bankThe Wall of Sorrow, a reinforced-concrete structure with niches containing memorial slabs with the names of the 66 largest Nazi extermination camps and massacre sites, is located near the Cemetery of Villages.
Khatyn: Symbol of National Memory - Sputnik International
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The Wall of Sorrow, a reinforced-concrete structure with niches containing memorial slabs with the names of the 66 largest Nazi extermination camps and massacre sites, is located near the Cemetery of Villages.
© RIA Novosti . U. Ivanov / Go to the photo bankThe Khatyn Memorial Complex was officially opened on July 5, 1969 and upgraded in 2004. Photo: Mikhail Gorbachev, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party, visits the Khatyn Memorial Complex.
Khatyn: Symbol of National Memory - Sputnik International
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The Khatyn Memorial Complex was officially opened on July 5, 1969 and upgraded in 2004. Photo: Mikhail Gorbachev, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party, visits the Khatyn Memorial Complex.
© RIA Novosti . Ivan Rudnev / Go to the photo bankThe Khatyn Memorial Complex is on the list of Belarusian Historical-Cultural Landmarks.
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The Khatyn Memorial Complex is on the list of Belarusian Historical-Cultural Landmarks.
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