Memorial heritage

    With the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy in 1919, the region of Liburnian Karst became part of the Kingdom of Italy and, as part of the same Kingdom, awaited the beginning of World War II. With the capitulation of Italy in September 1943, the Germans estabilished control over the territory and carried out several offensive actions with the intention of „cleaning“ the area of partisans. Ludwig Kübler, general of the 97th German Army Corps on the 24th of February 1944 issued an order with ten commandments in which, among other things, stated the following: Regarding the fight, everything that leads to success is just and necessary. I wil take personal responsability for any procedure undertaken in accordance with this principle. Who willingly helps the Partisans, deserves death and must be eliminated. By choosing the side of the Partisans, Lipa village, old men, women and children have become the target of the invaders.

krađa svinjeDuring their attack on the Lipa village, criminals documented with a camera the following actions: murders of civilians, stealing of civilian livestock and property and arson of the entire village. Photos were saved by chance. One of the German soldiers brought the film for developing to the Maraž photo shop in Ilirska Bistrica. The owner’s sister secretly developed duplicates. When the war ended she hanged the photographs in the shop window hoping that people passing by would recognize the location of the tragic event. Soon enough Lipa was recognized on the photographs.

The surviving inhabitants of Lipa, one hundred of them that on the 30th of April 1944 were among the Partisans, in working camps, absent for work or simply taking cattle to the pastures, slowly began with the renewal of their homes and families. In the year 1945, in the former Italian military baracks, the only roofed building at the time, Branko Afrić was born as the first post-war baby in Lipa. Intensive restoration of the village didn’t began until 1965 when the Fund for the Reconstruction of Lipa was established. A year after, the Lipa village was listed as cultural heritage in the category of memorial places. Every year, on the anniversay of the tragedy, the Commemoration Lipa Remembers in being held in Lipa.

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