Kucja Valley

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The Kucja Valley

The Kucja Valley (Slovene: Kucja dolina) is a blind valley on the outskirts of Ljubljana, Slovenia. The name may be derived from Slovene kucelj 'hill, rise', referring to the terminus of the valley. Geologically, it lies at the conjunction of a more gravelly layer with a more compact limestone layer.[1]

Mass graves[edit]

The Kucja Valley is the location of two sites connected with extrajudicial killings after the Second World War: the Big Brezar Shaft Mass Grave (Slovene: Grobišče Veliko Brezarjevo brezno) and the Kucja Valley Mass Grave (Slovene: Grobišče v Kucji dolini). At the end of May 1945 over 800 people were killed and their bodies were thrown into the Big Brezar Shaft.[2][3] The victims were a mix of Slovenian and Croatian prisoners of war from the St. Stanislaus Institute in nearby Šentvid (which was being used as an internment center by the Partisans)[4] and civilians, including women.[5][6]

The large number of bodies poisoned the groundwater in the area. Livestock refused to drink from the nearby spring in Podutik and local people noticed that the color and taste of the water had changed. Because of increasing talk among the local population, the communist authorities first tried to block the connection between the Big Brezar Shaft and the spring with a concrete barrier.[6] German POWs were then forced to remove the bodies from the shaft on 12 and 13 June 1945 and bury them in the nearby mass grave at the head of the Kucja Valley.[3][5] After this the German POWs were executed and buried together with the bodies they had moved.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gams, Ivan. 1968. Geomorfološko kartiranje: na primeru Rakitne in Glinic. Geografski vestnik: časopis za geografijo in sorodne vede (= Bulletin of the Association of the Geographical Societies of Slovenia) 40:69–88, p. 83
  2. ^ Dežman, Jože. 2009. Poročilo Komisije vlade Republike Slovenije za reševanje vprašanj prikritih grobišč: 2005-2008. Ljubljana: Družina.
  3. ^ a b Ferenc, Mitja, & Ksenija Kovačec-Naglič. 2005. Prikrito in očem zakrito: prikrita grobišča 60 let po koncu druge svetovne vojne. Celje: Muzej novejše zgodovine Celje, p. 73.
  4. ^ Big Brezar Shaft Mass Grave on Geopedia (Slovene)
  5. ^ a b Kucja Valley Mass Grave on Geopedia (Slovene)
  6. ^ a b c Matija Škerbec. 1957. Krivda rdeče fronte. Cleveland: Author, pp. 25, 128. (Slovene)

Coordinates: 46°04′42.95″N 14°26′11.57″E / 46.0785972°N 14.4365472°E / 46.0785972; 14.4365472