1 Execution site(s)
Vasyl H., born in 1927: "Before the Romanians arrived here for the second time [in July 1941], a few days or a week after the departure of the Soviets, locals killed and tortured Jews. At the beginning the Jews were killed in their houses. Then they would take them to a place outside the village where a pit had been dug by the Jews themselves. The majority of the Jews were killed on one day, from midnight to noon. The bodies of the people killed in the village were transported and buried in the same pit outside the village." (Witness n°2298U, interviewed in Banyliv, on September 22, 2017)
Miliieve is located, 57 km (33mi) west of Chernivtsi. The first record of the Jewish community dates back to the second part of the 19th century. Before 1918, the village was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. From 1918 to 1940, it was integrated into Romania, and in 1940 was taken over by the Soviet Union, a state of affairs that lasted until 1941. There is no exact information on how many Jews lived in the village of Miliieve, but according to local accounts, the Jewish population comprised 15-20% of the total population. The majority of Jews lived off small scale trade, agriculture and handicraft. A big Jewish community lived in Banyliv, where there were houses of prayer and a cemetery. On the eve of the war, a couple hundred Jews remained in the village, this small number was mainly due to immigration and the relocation of Jews to bigger towns for economic reasons.
Miliieve was occupied by Romanians in mid July 1941. For about a week, during a period of anarchy following the Soviet retreat and before the Romanian arrival, about 176 Jews were killed sporadically in- and outside the village in a field where a pit had been dug by the Jews themselves. The Jews were shot in small groups, or by families. Most had been found in hiding. According to Romanians records, local Jewish women were stripped naked, paraded through the streets, and beaten to death. One Jew who had run away was caught and cut in half with a saw. Supposedly, the massacres were carried out by the members of the OUN.
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