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Memorial to victims of a death-march near the former village of Čistá

 

Category: Jewish Sites and Cemeteries Region: Sokolov and its surroundings Town: Svatava

 

The memorial was built in place where graves of 12 women, who died during a death-march, were found. As the end of World War II was approaching, a group of 2,000 women from the Auschwitz concentration camp headed for another concentration camp in German Dachau. Due to the gradual liberation of many concentration camps, the destination of the march had been changed. From the original 2,000 women, only 160 captives arrived in the Svatava camp in the Sokolov region. After a short break, however, women were again driven to march towards Pilsen (Plzeň). Not far from Svatava, near the former village of Čistá, the above mentioned 12 women had died because of the cold, hunger and cruel handling from the guards. They were buried in shallow graves. The rest of the women reached Nýrsko. There they were executed by their German guards, who feared being caught by the allied armies and tried to melt among the local population and prisoners of the Wehrmacht.

Immediately after the war, the women at Čistá were duly buried and a memorial was built by their grave. Even though everyone knew about their Jewish origin, the Christian cross was fitted to the memorial for a long time. Only in 2003 was the memorial rebuilt and the grave was rearranged with a contribution of the Jewish community. Lately, people have been coming to visit the site in great numbers. It reminds them of the horrors of war caused by Nazism and the suffering people had to endure.

 
 
 
 

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