Kiblych | Vinnytsia

/ Anna C., born in 1929: “Once Kiblych was considered a Jewish village, as many Jews lived there. They were mainly merchants and ran stores.”  ©Nicolas Tkatchouk/Yahad - In Unum Dmytro B., born in 1933: “I saw four Jewish men with shovels, accompanied by an elderly woman and a policeman carrying a body wrapped in cloth to the burial site. When they returned, the elderly woman had disappeared.”  ©Nicolas Tkatchouk/Yahad - In Unum Anna R., born in 1928: “My brother, a partisan, was assigned to guard the Jewish labor camp alongside members of the police force, pretending to be one of them. He had to make sure that no prisoners left the camp.”  ©Nicolas Tkatchouk/Yahad - In Unum Anna C., born in 1927: “I remember the remaining Jews of the camp being marched towards Teplyk by the guards in green uniforms. The Jews were poorly dressed and walked barefoot.”  ©Nicolas Tkatchouk/Yahad - In Unum Anna C. pointing out the execution site of about 200 inmates of the Kiblych labor camp, killed over the course of a number of shootings conducted throughout the camp’s existence. No memorial has been erected on the site. ©Nicolas Tkatchouk/Yahad - In Unum

Execution of Jews in Kiblych

1 Execution site(s)

Kind of place before:
Period of occupation:
Number of victims:
About 200

Witness interview

Dmytro B., born in 1933: "In the winter of 1942, several hundred Jews from neighboring villages and Transnistria were transported to Kiblych and confined in the school building, which measured around 30 by 50 meters and was equipped with watchtowers at each corner. Thus, a Jewish labor camp was established. The starving inmates resorted to bartering with the local population, exchanging goods for food through a high barbed-wire fence that encircled the camp. While women and teenagers were forced into labor on road construction, digging trenches for water drainage, Jewish men worked in the quarries, tasked with transporting stones. My father managed to employ some Jewish tailors to work in our home. Such arrangements were authorized by the police, who ensured that any harm befalling these Jews would result in dire consequences for our family. Additionally, any earnings made by them were handed over to the police." (Testimony N°YIU1216U, interviewed in Kiblych, on May 27, 2011)

Historical note

Kiblych is located approximately 110 km (68 mi) southeast of Vinnytsia. The village first appeared in written records in the late 16th century as the property of Polish Prince Chetvertynskyi. Following the Second Partition of Poland in 1793, the village became part of the Russian Empire. During the first half of the 17th century and from the middle of the 18th century, Kiblych was home to a significant Jewish community, numbering 290 Jews in 1847 and increasing to 820 in 1887. According to the 1897 census, the village boasted 1,067 Jews, comprising approximately 35% of the total population.

During the Russian Civil War (1918-1920), 125 Jews fell victim to the pogroms conducted in Kiblych, while others sought refuge abroad. There is limited information available regarding the Jewish community of the village on the eve of the war. According to accounts from local residents, only a few Jewish families remained in Kiblych before the German invasion.

Holocaust by bullets in figures

Kiblych fell under German occupation in late July 1941. Shortly afterward, a German administration, including the establishment of a Kommandantur, as well as local police, was put in place. From the outset of the occupation, the rights of local Jews were severely curtailed, and their property was looted. In the winter of 1942, local Jews as well as those ones from the surrounding area, and individuals from the Romanian-occupied Transnistria region, totaling several hundred, were brought to the village and confined within the school building, enclosed by a high barbed-wire fence. This marked the creation of a Jewish labor camp, guarded by Germans and local policemen. Its inmates were forced to wear distinctive yellow symbols on their shoulders, backs, and hats.

While small children were permitted to remain in the camp, other Jewish detainees, along with local Ukrainians, were coerced into forced labor, contributing to the construction of the DGIV highway by working on the section connecting Vinnytsia and Uman. Meanwhile, certain skilled Jewish workers, particularly tailors, were "hired" by local residents and thus able to continue their profession. Harsh living conditions, including malnutrition, inadequate healthcare, and challenging work environments, led to the deaths of many inmates, whose bodies were interred in the Jewish cemetery.

Those deemed unfit for work, such as women and the elderly, were routinely taken to a ravine near the river and executed by German officers, their bodies interred in mass graves. Before their execution, the victims were forced to dig their own graves, which were then filled in by another group of Jews brought to the site for that purpose. It is estimated that up to 200 Jews perished in the Kiblych labor camp. During the camp’s liquidation, the remaining Jewish inmates were not shot but transferred elsewhere (presumably Teplyk or Raygorod), where they were subjected to forced labor before being murdered. There is no memorial at the execution site in the ravine.

For more information about the killing of Raygorod Jews please follow the corresponding profile.

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