Ukrainian government announces official commemorations marking 80th anniversary of Babyn Yar massacre


State ceremony attended by world leaders to take place in Babyn Yar on October 6

Two new commemorative facilities to be unveiled at Babyn Yar, as well as commemorative events around the world

Kiev, Ukraine, June 17, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Yermak and prime minister Denys Shmyhal, announced today during a joint press briefing alongside Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center (BYHMC), that an official state event to mark the eightieth anniversary of the Babyn Yar massacre will take place on October 6, 2021 in Kiev.

33,771 Jewish victims were shot dead in Babyn Yar by the Nazis in just two days, 29 and September 30, 1941. Tens of thousands of Ukrainians, Rome, mentally ill and others were subsequently shot in Babyn Yar throughout the Nazi occupation of Kiev. The estimated number of murdered victims at Babyn Yar is around 100,000, making it Europe largest mass grave. Babyn Yar has become a powerful symbol of the “Holocaust by bullets”, the estimated 2.5 million Jews who were murdered near their homes in similar Nazi mass shootings across Eastern Europe, including 1.5 million in Ukraine alone.

The Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center announced earlier this year the development of a museum complex, which will cover an area of ​​150 hectares, making it one of the largest memorial centers in the world. Holocaust to the world. Around ten buildings will eventually be erected as part of the complex, including a symbolic synagogue, which has just been completed. Two additional structures, both memorial facilities, will be unveiled to coincide with the state’s commemoration on October 6.

The “Crystal Wall of Crying”, by a conceptual artist and performer, Marina Abramović will be one of the largest art installations built in Europe over the past decade. “Kurgan of Memory” will be the first museum building on the site. The architecture takes the form of a kurgan, a sort of tumulus or tumulus erected on a last rest area, important for the history of Ukraine.

Chief of Staff of the President of Ukraine, Andriy Yermak noted that the state is preparing an important action plan regarding the 80th anniversary of the Babyn Yar tragedy.

“It is very important to us that after 80 years since this deplorable tragedy took place, and the 30th Ukraine Independence, President Volodymyr Zelensky became the one who ultimately took personal control of this matter. And we have really started to build the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center, the first stage of which will be inaugurated this year. “

Yermak said President Zelensky had set up a task force to complete the entire memorial within a few years and start functioning as a museum complex.

“Historical justice and historical memory, without which humanity cannot develop, are really very important for Ukraine. This is a global event to emphasize once again that such tragedies must not happen again. On the other hand, he will demonstrate once again that Ukraine is a country of tolerance, a country of peace. “

Ukraine Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said the Cabinet of Ministers plans to approve an action plan for the 80th anniversary of the Babyn Yar tragedy as soon as possible. He commented, “The implementation and support of initiatives to commemorate the events of Babyn Yar is a testament to our sadness and our awareness of the greatest tragedy on the European continent in the last century. “

Human rights activist Natan Sharansky, The chairman of the supervisory board of the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center, said in today’s briefing, The 80e anniversary of this appalling massacre is the perfect opportunity to right a historic wrong, for the sake of Ukraine, the Jewish people and even the world. It is a chance to tell the stories of those who were murdered, to honor their memories and to learn the lessons of this terrible tragedy. ”

There are Khrjanovsky, the artistic director of BYHMC, which is developing the museum complex with an international artistic council made up of world-renowned architects and artists, said: “Our goal is to create a space that makes Babyn Yar’s story close and relevant to everyone, no matter nation, gender, age or religion. We want people to feel and understand that the Babyn Yar’s story is their story, the story of their neighbors, their city, their nation, their world. Babyn Yar is a place of death for many victims – Jews, Rome, Soviet prisoners, psychiatric patients, Ukrainian nationalists, communists. All those who died there must be remembered and remembered. All deserve to have a voice to tell the story of Babyn Yar. In this sense, Babyn Yar is a polyphonic story, made up of the many stories of the people who died there, witnesses and survivors, tangible, cultural and natural objects that call this story. ”

Photos – Courtesy of Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center

About the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center

Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center is a non-governmental charitable organization whose aim is to preserve and cultivate the memory of the Holocaust and the tragedy of Babyn Yar by Ukraine by making the Babyn Yar district a place of memory. The Foundation’s mission is to honor the memory of the victims of the tragedy with dignity and to contribute to the humanization of society by preserving and studying the history of the Holocaust. In September 2020, Ukraine government represented by the Minister of Culture Oleksandr Tkachenko, under the auspices of the president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, signed a memorandum of understanding and cooperation with BYHMC, represented by a member of the Supervisory Board Ronald S. Lauder, to promote the construction of an appropriate memorial to the Babyn Yar tragedy. A series of commemorations in 2021 will mark the eightieth anniversary of the Babyn Yar tragedy.

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SOURCE Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center


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