Punitive and repressive activities of the Soviet authorities during the deportations of Ukrainians to Poland 1944-1951


  • Yuliia Kukhar


Ukrainians, Poles, resettlement, deportation, Sovietpower, terror, coercion, Operation Vistula.


The article examines the causes, course and consequences of the forced eviction of Ukrainians from their ethnic lands in Poland and Poles from the territory of Western Ukraine, according to the agreement of September 9, 1944, between the Chairman of the Council of People’s Commissars of the Ukrainian SSR N. Khrushchev and the head of the Polish National Liberation Committee E. Osubka-Morawski, signed in Lublin, which was a consequence of the implementation of the decisions of the Tehran conference on the establishment of new borders in Europe and resulted in the resettlement of 78,982 Poles from the Ukrainian SSR to Poland from November 1944 to November 1946. The author describes how during the deportation, the Soviet authorities forced Poles in the western regions of Ukraine to leave their ethnic territory and go to Poland by acts of murder, terror, and robbery. The deportation significantly reduced not only the ethnic but also the confessional presence of Roman Catholics in Ukraine, and Greek Catholics and Orthodox in Poland, which also underwent significant transformations. So, in general, the military hard times in the 1940s of the Polish-Ukrainian confrontation, deportation, Operation Vistula, which were accompanied by terror and repression against both peoples, changed both the ethno-geographical and confessional map of the studied territories, according to the USSR strategic plans. The author also highlights the repressive actions of Soviet security forces against the population of Western Ukraine in order to overcome the Ukrainian liberation movement and the imposition of the communist regime, and identifies the punitive operations against the Polish population by the Soviet authorities.The author characterizes the methods of the Soviet leadership in resolving inter-ethnic conflicts, as well as the role of the Ukrainian underground in the resettlement processes.
The deportation processes after the signing of the Vistula Action, a tragic page inthe history of the Ukrainian people, are studied. The «Vistula» action is one of the unprecedentedacts of ethnocide committed in the center of Europein 1947 against the autochthonous population that had lived for thousands of years in vast areas.