Munkács During the Holocaust
A Hungarian gendarme checks a woman entering the Munkács ghetto
In September 1938, following the Munich Conference and its subsequent agreements, the Sudetenland (western regions of Czechoslovakia) was torn away from Czechoslovakia and given to Germany. This led to Poland and Hungary annexing territory from Czechoslovakia, allowing Slovakia and Subcarpathian Rus' complete autonomy, although still under Czech sovereignty. In November 1938, following the First Vienna Award, Hungary annexed southwest Subcarpathian Rus', including Munkács and Ungvar.
On 10 November 1938, the Hungarian army entered Munkács. The Jews of the town blessed the return of Hungarian rule, but their optimism was soon brought to an end. The Hungarian authorities persecuted the Jews from the beginning of their annexation of the town. Jews fell victim to physical violence, abuse and robbery. The authorities harassed Zionist groups, limited the Jews' economic activities, and recruited many men for forced labor in the Hungarian army.
On 19 March 1944, the German army invaded Hungary and four weeks later, the concentration of Jews began. Jews from Munkács were forced into two ghettos, and those from the surrounding areas were assembled at two brick factories on the outskirts of town. On 11 May 1944 the deportations to Auschwitz began, and on 23 May the last deportation train left Munkács.