“The ‘Augustów roundup’ is an extremely tragic and painful wound of our history, it was the greatest crime committed in Poland after the end of WWII,” President Andrzej Duda wrote in a letter read out during the ceremony commemorating the 76th anniversary of the crime carried out by the Soviet forces between 10 and 26 July, 1945.
The “Augustów roundup”, the massacre of around 600 citizens of the Suwalszczyzna region (north-east Poland) conducted by the Soviet secret police,...see more
“Together with you, I bow my head to our compatriots who fought for an independent Poland and were killed at the hands of the Soviet occupiers,” the President wrote, declaring that “the memory of their martyrdom will always remain in our national consciousness, passed down from generation to generation.”
In July 1945, the Soviet secret police (NKVD), assisted by officers of the Security Office (UB), arrested several thousand of Suwałki’s (North-eastern Poland) inhabitants who were accused of collaborating with underground Polish independence organisations. At least 592 people disappeared without a trace, but according to the Association of the Memory of Victims of the 1945 Augustów Roundup, the number of murdered may be as high as 2,000.
The operation was aimed at destroying the Polish independence underground, particularly active in that area.
More information on “Augustów roundup” can be found on the website of the Institute of National Remembrance dedicated to the crime.(IPN)