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Latvian WSS executed in Sweeden after the end of WW2

Discussions on the foreigners (volunteers as well as conscripts) fighting in the German Wehrmacht, those collaborating with the Axis and other period Far Right organizations.
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Latvian WSS executed in Sweeden after the end of WW2

Postby e.polis on 29 Mar 2005 14:36

My mother told me of the execution of 120 members of Latvian WSS in Sweeden by hanging after the end of WW2, probably August 1945, her cousin was one of them, for some reason they were executed for being partisan fighters against the occuping USSR forces in Latvia and some how escaped or were handed over to Sweeden. She can not remember the circumstances of how they arrived in Sweeden or which country handed them or over arranged [b]'travell documents[/b]" but was told in 1957 by letter from a surving cousin that that was the fate of his brother after his release from a Russian gulag. Any one have further information on this matter.
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Postby Topspeed on 29 Mar 2005 15:11

I find this very bizarre. Swedes hanging Latvians for resisting Soviets. I know Swedes turned people to USSR, but hanging them is quite a new information. Never heard of such.
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Postby VJK on 29 Mar 2005 15:15

Hi!

The 120 Latvian Legionnaires were not executed in Sweden. They had managed to escape by boat from Kurland to Sweden in the last days of the war. The Swedes interned them and then at the demand of the Soviets handed them over to the Soviets, this despite Sweden being a neutral country. Some Latvians committed suicide in order to avoid being handed over, others attempted suicide (a friend of my father's drove a pencil into his eye, survived, avoided being handed over and died at a ripe old age in London). Of those that were handed over, a number were executed by the Soviets, the remainder sent to the Gulags. Some years ago (mid 1990s - I can't remember precisely now), the Swedish King invited those that are still alive to Stockholm and publicly apologised for what Sweden had done to them.

Regards,

VJK
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Postby CvD on 29 Mar 2005 18:33

Sweden abolished the death penalty in peacetime in 1921 and in war time 1972.
The last execution was in 1910 when Johan Alfred Andersson-Ander was executed with a guillotine (the first and only time with a guillotine in Sweden). With other words, no latvian was executed in Sweden after the war.
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Postby e.polis on 30 Mar 2005 00:27

It just goes to show how over time certain facts can be distorted and exaggerated, my mother is 80 years old and at the time, rumours of the disappearance of the men were perhaps distorted and she beleived what she was told. It does how ever contain a certain element of truth, 120 men were in Sweden, and they were given to the Soviets for what ever reason and there were executions and some must have suffered incredible hardships. It was a shameful act by Sweden to hand over the men and no amount of pitiful excuses can justify what they did. How many other men from other countries were treated exactly the same. Also the treatment by the Soviets can only be described as a war crime and a barbaric act, after all these men were doing their duty to try free Latvia from the illegal Soviet occupation of their home land. As always the Soviets remain unaccountable for many inhumane treatment and out right murder of oppressed people.
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Postby Martin Månsson on 30 Mar 2005 05:29

Some Latvians committed suicide in order to avoid being handed over


Several German soldiers did the same thing. Much is described in the book "Schutzlos in Schweden". There were several camps in Sweden who hosted former German soldiers, I live near one of them and have been there, not much to see thogh.

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Postby VJK on 30 Mar 2005 19:36

Hi!

Just to be precise with the figures, a total of 132 Latvians, 9 Lithuanians and 7 Estonians were handed over to the Soviets on January 25., 1946. Ustuf. Oskars Lapa committed suicide in the internment camp by cutting the veins in his arms and legs and driving a dagger into his heart. Ustuf. Peteris Vabulis committed suicide by severing the artery in his throat at the port just prior to boarding.
On 20. June, 1994, the 40 still surviving Latvians were received by King Carl XVI Gustav of Sweden in Stockholm.

Regards,

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Postby Mikedc on 31 Mar 2005 17:54

VJK wrote:
Ustuf. Oskars Lapa


Hello FJK,
Can you tell me if he was Latvian, Estonian or Lithuanian. And do you have by any accident some
more info about this officer???

Same goes for the following man:
Ustuf. Peteris Vabulis


If possible I wanna know from which country he was and if there's some more info known about him
I'm interested in that as well.

And when did both men committed suicide, on January 25th 1946 or at a later time??? At a later time would be
my guess because they're handed over to the Sovjets on this day so committing suicide on the same day would
be almost impossible.


Greetings,
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Postby Lit. on 31 Mar 2005 18:15

Here is the picture and details about the Tragedy "Made in Sweden"


Image

Image

http://www.lacplesis.com/SWEDEN01.htm

The list of 9 Lithuanians is not correct in spelling.
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Postby VJK on 31 Mar 2005 18:39

Hi Mike!

Both officers were Latvian. Ustuf. Lapa (born 19 June 1904, served in the 15. Art. Reg.) committed suicide in the Swedish internment camp at Räneslätt on 28. November, 1945. Ustuf. Vabulis (born 3. October 1907) committed suicide on January 25th, 1946 on the bus that had taken him and his comrades to the port of Trelleborg where they were to be forcibly put on board the Soviet freighter "Beloostrov".

Regards,

VJK
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Postby PK on 02 Apr 2005 00:22

VJK, you dont happen to have a list of all latvians that was handed over to the Soviets by the Swedish goverment? (also ranks would be more than welcome! :)

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Postby e.polis on 02 Apr 2005 05:19

I would also be very interested to find out if this happened more than once, was there any justification for this type of action. To take it one step further did any other country hand over unwilling people to the Soviets.
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Postby Annelie on 02 Apr 2005 12:21

To take it one step further did any other country hand over unwilling people to the Soviets.


I believe I have read the Americans handed over "people" to the Soviets.
There have been cases of Russian POW's in US even committed suicide rather than be
forced to return to Russia. I am thinking of General Vlasov's men here.

Someone may correct me if I am wrong please.
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Postby VJK on 02 Apr 2005 12:40

Hi PK!

You'll find all the names and DoB of those handed over in the site referred to by Lit. above. No. 1 was an Ostubaf., nos. 2 - 4 were Hstuf, nos. 5 - 9 were Ostuf., nos. 10 - 20 were Ustuf., nos. 21 - 22 were Arzte, nos. 23 - 26 were Sturmscharführer, no. 27 was a Hauptscharführer, no. 28 was a Scharführer, nos. 29 - 48 were Unterscharführer, nos. 49 - 130 were Oberschütze, Schütze and 4 Luftwaffe Helfer. 2 civilians, Roberts Ciritis and Osvalds Melecis were also handed over.

Regards,

VJK
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Postby VJK on 02 Apr 2005 12:45

Hi!

Just as an addition, in the second pic posted by Lit., the man being forcibly carried on board the Beloostrov is Valentins Silamikelis. On board the bus, he rammed his arm through the window, but despite that was carried bleeding on to the Soviet vessel. He survived his ordeal, is still living today in Riga and has written a book about the whole affair.

Regards,

VJK
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