Otyniya (Ottynia, Otynia) | Ivano-Frankivsk

A Jewish wedding in the Dolberg family, Prewar picture, Ottynia, Poland © Yad Vashem / Stefania D., born in 1929, saw that the Gestapo members who rounded up the Jews were happy and drunk © Markel Redondo – Yahad- In Unum Maria K., born in 1923, witnessed the shooting of a group of Jews. They had to approach the edge of the pit, one next to another. There were men, women and children. © Markel Redondo – Yahad – In Unum Stefania D., born in 1929, saw the Jews gathered in the synagogue and how they were crammed into trucks like sardines, “Sardinenpackungen”.  © Markel Redondo – Yahad – In Unum Anelia G., born in 1928, “When we had religious lessons at school our Jewish classmates could go home.”  © Markel Redondo – Yahad-In Unum Execution site of Jews at the Jewish cemetery. The bodies are still buried there, Otyniya © Markel Redondo – Yahad – In Unum

Execution of Jews in Otyniya

1 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before:
Jewish cemetery
Period of occupation:

Witness interview

Maria G. explains : "I saw a group of Jews who were shot in the Jewish cemetery. The Jews (men, women, children) were brought in trucks and placed at the edge of the grave and were shot together. A shooter said he had pity for them. But the shooter still fired." (Witness N°1836, interviewed in Otyniya, on September 4, 2013).

German archives

“Six Jews were taken by two Gestapo members farther in the forest where six big graves had been dug by the militia. I also had to go with another fellow to the execution site. The six Jews were then shot by the two Gestapo members. The militiamen buried the corpses and covered the graves.” [Deposition of Augustin L., taken in Grau, February 25, 1964, B162-5002].

Historical note

Otyniya, the first record of which dates to 1610, is located along the Dniester River about 28km southeast of Ivano-Frankivsk. As part of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire province of Galicia, the town was under Polish administration until September 1939. The town had a large industrial and manufactural complex including an iron factory, distilleries, and mills. Prior to the war, a third of the population was Jewish.

Holocaust by bullets in figures

According to some sources, there was no mass execution in Otyniya as all of the Jews, about 1,800 at that time, were most likely deported by truck to Kolomya, Ivano-Frankivsk and later deported to the concentration camp of Belzec. One of the witnesses interviewed by Yahad stated that before being taken, the Jews were locked up in the synagogue for a period of time. The majority of Jews from the Kolomyya ghetto were transported to the Belzec camp. According to sources, about 1,500-6,000 Jews from the Kolomyya ghetto were murdered in the forest near Shcheparivtsi (Szeparowce Forest) during the different Aktions conducted at the end of January 1942 and February 1943. During the fieldwork, Yahad-In Unum was able to identify the execution site of Jews in Otyniya. According to three eyewitnesses, a group of about hundred Jews was shot at the edge of the pit by the Germans, at the site of the Jewish cemetery. Maria K. (Eyewitness n°1836) recounted that there were three shooters.

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