June 14, 2022

The ESJF visits Liozno, Belarus for an educational event

On Wednesday, the ESJF held an education event in the military-historical museum of the agricultural town of Liozno, Belarus. During the atrocities of the Shoah, the Jewish inhabitants of Belarus faced devastating losses, with a death toll as high as 90% of the country’s Jewish population. Like many other Jewish cemeteries in the country, Liozno was left without a community to safeguard it, and in the decades since, fell into disrepair. The ESJF fenced and protected this site in 2021 under funding from the Auswärtiges Amt. The founder of Chabad Hasidism, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, was born Liozno and the town was also home to the ancestors of Belarussian-French Artist Marc Chagall.

This education event was organised for museum workers, journalists, local historians, educators and the ideology department of the local district executive committee. At the meeting, representatives of the Jewish community of Mogilev, known historian Ida Shenderovich and photojournalist Alex Litin, spoke about the history of the Liozno Jewish community, Jewish funeral rituals, the preservation of Jewish cemeteries and how they can be included in a cultural/heritage map of the town. In the near future, two more educational events will be held in the Vitebsk region, where local residents will be able to learn more about the Jewish history of the city.

We would like to say a special thanks to the Museum director, Olga Nikolaevna Samushchenko, Ida, Alexander and the Auswärtiges Amt in particular for supporting the organisation of this event. Thank you to all who attended and demonstrated the importance of the preservation of Jewish cemeteries.

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