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President: I bow my head over the entire Polish countryside, which did not bend to terror and the will of the occupier

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On Friday, President Andrzej Duda took part in the celebration of the 80th anniversary of the pacification of Sułkowice and Harbutowice by the Germans in Lesser Poland. – In July 1943 Sułkowice and Harbutowice paid the highest price for the tradition of Polishness and the steadfast, firm will to stay with Poland – he said.

– I bow my head to the entire Polish countryside, which did not bend to terror and the will of the occupant – said the president on the square in front of the monument to the victims of Pacification in Sułkowice. – In the families of this land, there has always been a tradition of Polishness, resistance to every invader. For this tradition and the steadfast, firm will to stand by Poland and Polishness, in July 1943, Sułkowice and Harbutowice paid the highest price, stressed Duda.

As he recalled, the Germans then carried out an action of crushing the population of the Polish countryside, which supported the partisans, the resistance movement.

Andrzej DudaPAP/Łukasz Gągulski

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Mayor: It was a black day in the history of Sułkowice and Harbutowice

The president emphasized that it was a black day in the history of Sułkowice and Harbutowice, “but today, written in golden letters along with the names of all the heroes on the list of martyrs fighting for free, sovereign, independent Poland, for regaining independence, for dignity, for our values, so deeply rooted in the Polish countryside.

Read also: 80 years ago, the Germans pacified Michniów, killed over 200 people. There were 817 such villages in Poland

– People gave their lives for the cause. Not only at that moment. Also all those who were transported to the Płaszów camp, to other places of suffering and torment, and who never returned alive, as well as those who returned alive from the places of martyrdom, but left a wound that did not heal for life, said Duda .

Speaking about the decisive, steadfast attitude of the inhabitants in the fight for independence during the occupation, but also about hard work, the tradition of blacksmithing and farming, he emphasized that “this is the sum of the building blocks that make up this great edifice of our free state, which today stands in in Europe and in the world and is developing dynamically.

He thanked the residents for enduring that difficult time of war and for coming every year in front of the monument and at the mass grave at the cemetery to pay tribute to the fallen and for passing on that history to younger generations. He also thanked researchers and historians, especially the Krakow branch IPNfor the fact that they took care of explaining the details of events from 80 years ago.

26 inhabitants of Sułkowice and Harbutowice were murdered

On July 24, 1943, the Germans murdered 26 inhabitants of Sułkowice and Harbutowice in the Myślenice county (Małopolska), and sent several dozen more to labor camps.

More than 2,000 soldiers of the German gendarmes and the blue police took part in the operation 80 years ago. Residents began to be driven out of their homes from 4 in the morning. Dozens of people were tortured and forced to hand over their collaborators. – The act of cruelty lasted almost the whole day – recalled the mayor of Sułkowice, Artur Grabczyk, and pointed out that it is not known how many victims that day brought, how many people were traumatized for life.

During the ceremony, recordings were also played with the memory of an elderly resident of Sułkowice, a witness to the events from 80 years ago. As part of the celebrations, a mass was held, the national anthem was sung, there was also an appeal of remembrance and the laying of wreaths at the monument to the victims. The artistic setting was provided by the Sułkowice Brass Orchestra.

Celebration of the 80th anniversary of the pacification of Sułkowice and HarbutowicePAP/Łukasz Gągulski

Main photo source: PAP/Łukasz Gągulski



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