August 2 - International Roma Holocaust Remembrance Day.


The Second World War, the most terrible tragedy of the twentieth century, caused suffering to all peoples and led to a huge number of victims. Ukraine was one of the countries that suffered the most, because it was fully occupied by Nazi Germany and was subjected to the cruellest regime of the invaders, losing during this time millions of people of various nationalities, including Roma.

During the Second World War, the Nazis took lives of hundreds of thousands of Roma throughout Europe.

In the first days when Nazis entered Kyiv, three Roma camps that had been living in Kurenivka were murdered in Babyn Yar.

Sorrowful day - Kali Trash (black horror) of Roma takes place on August 2 each year all over the world. This date is a tribute to those who died from genocide during the Second World War. It was in that "Gypsy Night" from 2 to August 3 in the gas chambers of the concentration camp Auschwitz - Birkenau about three thousand Roma, including children and the elderly were burned alive. It is believed that during the Holocaust from 600,000 to one and half million  Roma died because of repressions.

On August 2, 18.30 at the territory of the National Historical and Memorial Reserve "Babyn Yar" it was held the evening of the memory of the victims of the Holocaust of Roma  - "We will live, Roma!".

Organizers of the event: Gypsy Academic Drama Theater "Romance", International Fund "Renaissance", National Cultural Association "Amala", the leaders of public associations, representatives of Roma organizations, theatre artists, with the assistance of employees of the National Historical and Memorial Reserve "Babyn Yar".

The speeches were  made  by Head of the Department of Culture of the Kyiv City State Administration Diana Popova, Head of the Department for Religions and Nationalities of the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine Andriy Yurash, Head of the Department of  culture, nationalities and religions of the Kyiv Regional State Administration Igor Podolyanets, Charge d'Affaires of the Federal Republic of Germany Mr Wolfgang Bindzayl, researcher  at the Ukrainian Center for Holocaust Studies  Michail Tyaglyy,  actor and film director Oleg Prymahenov, deputy director general for research of  NHMR "Babyn Yar" Andrei Tkachuk, head of the Kiev cultural historical and educational society "Romanipe" Volodimir Zolotarenko, People's Artist of Ukraine, artistic director of the Kiev Gypsy Theater "Romance" Igor Krykunov.

Also, the event was attended by representatives of the Ukrainian government, the diplomatic corps, public figures, clergy, Roma activists, media representatives, Kyivites, and others.

The memorial prayer was performed by Father Valeriy, the musical number "Wind" was performed by the People's Artist of Ukraine Leonid Sandulenko, the musical poetry  "Babyn Yar" (on the poem of the Romani poet and translator, Member of the National Union of Writers of Ukraine,  Mikhail Kozymyrenko "Babyn Yar"), was performed by actress of the theater "Romance" Natalia Zolotareva.

 In memory of the lost souls, all those present honoured innocent  Roma victims with a moment of silence,  performed the  Romani anthem "Gelem, Gelem"  and in accordance with Romani tradition stood all together in a circle as a symbol of the unity of generations and protection from the terrible tragedy that should never happen again.