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22.06.2007

In memory of the victims of communist repression at the Salina Clearing

   

A Memorial Service [Panykhyda] and remembrance gathering will take place on 26 June in Dobromyl, the Sambir district of the Lviv region to honour the Victims of the Terror murdered in June 1941 in the Salina Clearing.

The Service will begin at 9.00 in Dobromyl, and be followed from 10.30 to 11.30 by a procession to the Salina Clearing.

At 12.30 a Chapel “Of All Saints of the Ukrainian People” will be formally opened and a memorial service held.

Salina

Salina is the name of the clearing and of a salt mine in the Dobromyl district. The salt mine was known for centuries both in Halychyna and in Poland, Slovakia and Austria. It brought Salina both profit and fame.

In June 1941 the mine lay gutted with bodies. In trucks covered with tarpaulin, with blood spilling onto the earth, they brought the bodies of executed victims. On one of those terrible days a huge number of prisoners from the Peremyshillsk Prison were brought to the mine for execution.  Tractors were used to drown out the human cries and the sounds of gunfire. And when the executioners ran out of bullets they beat their victims to death. The remains of 3,600 victims lie in the salt mine, murdered by forces of the NKVD which had been positioned in Salina since the winter.

The tragedy of Salina is one with that of Bykivnya, Sandarmokh and Babi Yar.

They tried to wipe the memory of this tragedy from the face of the earth, to make it forgotten, driven from people’s minds.

However it moved and continues to move our hearts with one short word: REMEMBER!

In the deep of this old garden there is a Memorial of Sorrow and Pain – a person climbing from the depths of the salt mine. The person is holding out his salt-corroded hands to the sky, the Sun and to our hearts, as though entreating: “DO NOT FORGET!”

Nadiya Stanishchuk

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