The 26th of April – the Slovenian Victims of the Holocaust Remembrance Day
17 June 2015 at 11 a.m.
After the attack on the Kingdom of Yugoslavia by axis powers in April, the Jews of Prekmurje experienced a short German occupation and afterwards lived under the Hungarian occupational government. In April 1941, the members of Kulturbund and Germans plundered their property for a short time. After the allocation of Prekmurje to Hungary the situation quietened down somewhat. However, it changed radically after the occupation of Hungary by the Germans on 19 March 1944 when the Nazis took power and started to perform the most systematic cleansing of the Jewish population yet on the territory occupied by Hungary, i. e. in Prekmurje, as well. Determined and fatal cleansing of the Jewish population in Prekmurje started in spring 1944. On 26 April 1944, the largest group of Jews of Prekmurje was collected in Lendava and Murska Sobota and transferred first to Čakovec and to Nagykanizsa afterwards, from where the Nazis conveyed them by waggonsto Birkenau which represented the assembly centre for the largest camp of death – Auschwitz. They arrived there at the end of April and beginning of May. This, first and largest transport of Jews of Prekmurje comprised 367 people. The majority ended their lives in Auschwitz on 21 and 22 May 1944. The second, somewhat smaller wave of deportations happened in autumn 1944. According to the data collected so far, 392 Jews from Prekmurje were killed. Only a handful survived Auschwitz.
The Center of Jewish Cultural Heritage Synagogue Maribor has with the support of various organisations and individuals conceived initiative for proclamation of the 26th of April as the Slovenian Victims of the Holocaust Remembrance Day. The initiative will be presented at the round table on 17 June 2015 at 11 a.m. in the Maribor Synagogue. At the round table conducted by Dr. Irena Šumi we will host acknowledged historians and researchers of the Holocaust and anti-Semitism history – Dr. Marjan Toš, Dr. Oto Luthar and Franc Kuzmič, MA.
The round table is organized within the frame of the Stone Tears project, which is supported by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance – IHRA and Municipality of Maribor.