1 Execution site(s)
Mykola K., born in 1927, explains: "I could see the Jews through the barbed wire surrounding the ghetto, but the policemen did not allow us to speak with them. On the sly we gave them some food because they were starving. But, if a policeman noticed, we would have been beaten badly." (Testimony N°1454, interviewed in Povorsk, on April 28th, 2012)
Povorsk is located 70 km north from Lutsk. The first record of the Jews in Povorsk dates back to late-19th century. Between the two wars the village was under Polish rule. In 1921, only 5% of the total population was Jewish. But, by 1930s its number increased as some 200 Jews lived in the village. The majority of Jews lived of small scaled trade, for instance timber. Other Jews were artisans. There was a synagogue in the village. Zionist movements operated in the town until 1939, when Povorsk was annexed by the Soviet Union, and all religious and cultural institutions and movements were banned. At this time the Jewish population slightly increased as the Jewish refugees from Poland resettled in the village.
The Germans occupied the village on June 26th, 1941. There were no German military or civilian authorities who stationed in the village; however, a local police was created. The Jewish continued to live normally for about one year after the occupation until a ghetto was established in late August or early September 1942. All Jews were forced to move into one street which was fenced in with barbed wire and guarded by local police, according to the local resident interviewed by Yahad. One month later, on September 4th, 1942, the Jews were marched from the ghetto in the direction of the former military base, where the gasoline tank ditches had been dug by the Soviets. From the accounts of an eyewitness to the shooting, we know that first, the Jews were gathered and forced to sit down. While waiting, they had to give up all their valuables and gold that they had on them. One hour later, they were taken to the ditches where they were shot in groups. Many Jews managed to go in hiding and afterwards they joined the partisans. However, the majority of them were caught and shot in the course of the following months.
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