RJC researching mass graves of Jews shot by the Nazis during World War II.
The first stage of the Killing Sites of Russia project is a website detailing information on all the locations where Jews were executed in large numbers during the war. The site is scheduled to launch on June 22, the day that Germany attacked the Soviet Union in 1941, and will provide an online map showing places of execution, the number of dead and any existing lists of names. Information will be available on the current state of grave sites and investigation and preservation work done by local activists.
“The site will be an open resource where anyone can exchange information and take part in our project,” said Nikolay Propirny, the RJC Executive Vice President.
The RJC plans to install monuments at mass grave sites. According to Yuriy Kanner, Deputy Chairman of the European Jewish Fund’s Board of Governors, regional Jewish communities will be asked to beautify these burial sites in accordance with religious traditions.
The privately-funded project will promote cooperation with regional public organizations working with grave sites of WWII victims.
According to Ilya Altman, co-chair of the Research and Educational Holocaust Center, information is currently available on some 40 grave sites in 23 Russian regions containing the remains of more than 140,000 Jews executed by the Nazis.
The Killing Sites of Russia project will become part of a larger Killing Sites of Europe project, which will gather information on Jewish mass graves in Moldavia, Ukraine, Belarus and the Baltic States.