Terror in NKVD Prisons in Stanislav Region during 1939-1941


  • Vasyl Tymkiv


terror, NKVD, prisons, torture, Soviet period, Stanislav Region.


This study aims to expose the NKVD’s terror as a system of physical and psychological torture implemented in the prisons of Stanislav Region from 1939 to 1941, targeting political prisoners, and the horrendous crimes committed against them, utilizing materials from forensic examinations and eyewitness testimonies.
The research is based on analyzing testimonies from former inmates and materials from excavations that reveal the tragic circumstances and crimes perpetrated by the Soviet authorities.
It has been established that the terror in NKVD prisons in Stanislav Region was systematic and extraordinarily brutal, employing various torture methods including not only physical but also psychological torments such as conducting night interrogations and detaining prisoners’ children alongside adults. The article exposes facts of brutal treatment of women, including pregnant women. Tragic facts testify to the use of various devices and instruments for torture, including specialized torture chambers equipped with electric chairs and other devices utilizing electric current for torture. The role of the NKVD in concealing torture and mass executions is also investigated. The author concludes that the terror in NKVD prisons in Stanislav Region was systemic and accompanied by the use of various methods and forms of abuse against prisoners.
Previously unknown facts about the terror system in NKVD prisons in Stanislav Region are revealed, adding new aspects to the understanding of the repressive policy of the Soviet regime. Overall, this article offers a detailed analysis of the topic of terror in NKVD prisons during 1939-1941, expanding our understanding of the repressive policy of the Soviet regime and its impact on the victims of political repression.
The research results can be utilized in historical studies and in the study of the Soviet period in Ukrainian history, as well as for understanding the tragic legacy of totalitarian regimes.