Ghetto in Chisinau, Moldova
According to the Romanian census in 1930, more than 50 thousand Jews lived in Chisinau. After the Soviet occupation in 1940, some of the Chisinau Jews were deported, some were drafted into the Red Army, and some tried to evacuate. There is no data on the decline of the Jewish population between the Soviet occupation and the beginning of the German invasion. It is known that Jewish refugees arrived in Chisinau with the beginning of the Soviet-German war. According to Yad Vashem, there were about 60,000 Jews in the city at the time of the Nazi occupation.
Chisinau was occupied by German troops on July 16, 1941. The next day, about 14,000 Jewish men were killed. Subsequently, the city came under Romanian control.
The order to establish a ghetto in Chisinau was dated July 25, 1941. The Romanian authorities allocated two days to resettle the Jews. The ghetto was created in an area where Jews predominantly lived before the war and was limited to the streets: Kozhukharskaya, Kharlampievskaya, Pavlovskaya and Voznesenskaya. A wooden fence about 4 km long surrounded the area. There were two exits from the ghetto: between Kharlampievskaya and Kozhukharskaya streets, and between Fontannaya and Asiatskaya streets. The ghetto was guarded by 80 to 250 Romanian soldiers.
About 100 non-Jewish families of Chisinau residents ended up in the ghetto, who were given passes to enter the city. Industrial facilities remained on the territory of the ghetto, and the road to the airport passed through its territory. Peasants were allowed into the ghetto so that they could sell goods to Jews.
At the end of July 1941, the authorities created a Jewish committee in the ghetto, which was responsible for the life of the prisoners. On August 5, 1941, the Romanian authorities obliged Jews to wear decals.
There are known cases when Romanian officials entered the ghetto and bought jewelry from Jews, while police officers made escape for money.
In early August 1941, the authorities demanded that Jews be sent to forced labor. On August 1, out of 450 sent to the ghetto, 39 returned, the rest were shot. On August 7 and 8, 1941, after a week of absence from the ghetto, 100 of the 525 people sent by the authorities to work returned.
According to Romanian documents, in the second half of August 1941 there were 9.9 thousand Jews in the ghetto. By mid-September 1941, the number of prisoners had increased to 11.5 thousand at the expense of Jews from the surrounding towns and villages.
In October 1941, the Romanian authorities began the deportation of Chisinau Jews to Transnistria. So, on October 8, 1941, 2.5 thousand Jews were sent to the camp Domanevka in the Odessa region, of which only 100 people reached their destination. According to Romanian documents, at the beginning of 1942, about 100 Jews remained in Chisinau.