Sapotskin

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Sapotskin (Belarusian: Сапоцкін, Russian: Сопоцкин, Polish: Sopoćkinie) is a small town in Belarus, 27 km (16.8 mi) north-east of Hrodna. It has circa 2,000 inhabitants, almost exclusively identifying themselves as ethnic Poles.

It is one of the centers of the Polish minority in Belarus and the death-place of Gen. Józef Olszyna-Wilczyński. It is also the only town in Belarus where the Polish minority was allowed to use bilingual street signs.

It was part of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (1560-1795) before Partitions of Poland. It was annexed to Prussia and was part of New East Prussia Province in 1795. Later, it was part of Lomza Department of Grand Duchy of Warsaw (1807-1815). It was given to Russian Empire and successively part of Augustow Voivodeship (1815-1837), Augustow Governorate (1837-1867) and Suwałki Governorate (1867-1915) before German occupiation between 1915 and 1918. It was a gmina center in Augustow powiat in Białystok Voivodeship at Second Polish Republic times. It was occupied by Soviet Union in 22 September 1939 and was become part of Belostok Oblast as a raion center in Belarussian SSR. It was occupied by Wehrmacht between 1941 and 1944 and was part of Bezirk Bialystok. After liberation by Red Army, it was part of Hrodna Voblast as a raion center, despite making objections by the Polish. Sapotskin raion was removed in 10 March 1959 and was bounded to Grodno raion.

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Coordinates: 53°50′00″N 23°39′40″E / 53.83333°N 23.66111°E / 53.83333; 23.66111