Name of commemorative date on 22 June changed in Belarus
On 23 March Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko signed Decree No. 117 to amend Decree No. 157 as of 26 March 1998 “On national and public holidays and commemorative dates in the Republic of Belarus”.
The name of the memorable date was changed from “National Remembrance Day of the Victims of the Great Patriotic War - June 22” to “National Remembrance Day of the Victims of the Great Patriotic War and the Genocide of the Belarusian people - June 22”.
The decree was based on the law of 5 January 2022 “On the genocide of the Belarusian people”. The law recognized as the genocide of the Belarusian people the atrocities committed by Nazi criminals and their accomplices, nationalist formations during the Great Patriotic War and the post-war period, aimed at the systematic physical destruction of the Belarusian people.
During the Great Patriotic War, the Nazis set up more than 260 death camps and places of mass extermination of people in the territory of Belarus. They included Trostenets, Khatyn, the Ozarichi death zone, Krasny Bereg. According to incomplete data, about 1.5 million people died in the camps alone in Belarus. More than 9,000 settlements were destroyed in the territory of the country. In total, Belarus lost every third of its residents.