Macelj massacre

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A cross in Macelj

In May and June 1945, at the end of World War II in Europe, the forests near Macelj, a village in northern Croatia, was the site where a large number of soldiers, women and children, were shot during the Bleiburg repatriations.[1]


In 1992, after Croatia became independent, 1,163 bodies were excavated from 23 mass graves in the region, leaving around 130 possible mass grave locations unexplored.[1]

Among those executed in Macelj were 25 Catholic priests from the Franciscan monastery of Široki Brijeg which were temporarily hidden in nearby Krapina.[2] In 2008, the Croatian Ministry of the Interior launched an investigation into Stjepan Hršak's possible involvement in that event.[2]

Reburial of excavated bodies in 2005 was followed by public mass led by Cardinal Josip Bozanić, at the time Archbishop of Zagreb.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Macelj - gora zločina!". Večernji list (in Croatian). 2012-05-16. Retrieved 2012-06-01.
  2. ^ a b "Stjepan Hršak: Nisam sudjelovao u likvidaciji 25 svećenika u Macelju" [Stjepan Hršak: I did not take part in liquidation of 25 priests at Macelj]. Jutarnji list (in Croatian). 2008-02-09. Retrieved 2012-06-01.
  3. ^ "Biskup Gorski o maceljskim žrtvama: 'Nepravda nije ispravljena, ona se obnavlja i raste'". 7 June 2020.