|Nazi extermination site|
|Location||Near Bihać, Bosnia and Hercegovina|
|Operated by||Independent State of Croatia and Ustaše|
|Operational||July 1941 – September 1941|
|Inmates||primarily Serbs, Jews and Roma|
|Killed||est. around 15,000|
|Liberated by||Yugoslav Partisans|
Garavice (Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian: Garavice; Serbian Cyrillic: Гаравице; Hebrew: Garavitze) was an extermination location established by the Independent State of Croatia during World War II near Bihać, northwest Bosnia and Herzegovina. Between 12,000 to 15,000 people, mostly Serb civilians, were murdered at Garavice by the Ustaše regime in 1941.
Garavice massacre is a part of widespread persecution of Serbs, genocide that included extermination, expulsions and forced religious conversions of large numbers of ethnic Serbs by the Ustaše regime in the Independent State of Croatia. These atrocities were carried out by Croatian and Bosniak collaborators and Axis occupying forces during World War II.
The Independent State of Croatia was founded by the Ustaše on 10 April 1941, after the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis powers. The Independent State of Croatia consisted of most of modern-day Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, together with some parts of modern-day Serbia. Croatia was the only nation beside Germany to operate extermination camps during World War II.
Arrests of Serbian and Jewish civilians in and around Bihać were ordered by Ljubomir Kvaternik, a county prefect, in June 1941. Arrestees were transported and executed at Garavice, near Bihać. In July 1941, the Ustaše murdered between 12,000 and 15,000 Serbs, Jews, and Roma in Garavice. The largest number of victims were Serbs. Corpses were thrown in mass graves at Garavice or tossed into the neabry Klokot and Una rivers.
In 1981, the Yugoslav government established a memorial park in Garavice, designed by renowned architect Bogdan Bogdanović and opened 39 years after the massacre. In 2011, the memorial park was declared a National Monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Since then, however, the park has reportedly been neglected by the Bosnian government, and is overgrown with grass and bushes, and desecrated with Nazi, Ustaša and pro-Islamic graffiti.
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