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Jewish history and Holocaust studies scholar murdered in Ukraine

(JTA) — A 29-year-old man has been arrested in Ukraine in the suspected murder this month of a prominent Holocaust and Jewish history researcher there.

Police in Nikolayev, near Odessa, made the arrest Tuesday in the May 14 slaying of Vladimir Shchukin, 67, who had worked at the State Archive of the Nikolaev Region. The suspect was not named in the media and police have not indicated whether they believe the motive was connected to Shchukin’s writings on the Holocaust, the Strana news site reported.

Shchukin, who was not Jewish, was found dead in his apartment.

In addition to writing the definitive work on the Holocaust in the Nikolayev region, Shchukin also authored research papers on the Jewish presence in Ukraine more broadly. In 2016 he co-authored a Russian-language work titled “Jewish agricultural colonies of the Kherson province.”

In 2018, another historian, Mikola Shityuk, was killed in Nikolayev. Police arrested a suspect but he was released soon thereafter. The case has remained unsolved.

Shityuk, who also was not Jewish, had published multiple research papers on Holodomor, a famine inflicted on what is now Ukraine by the Soviet Union. Many Ukrainians consider Holodomor an attempt at genocide.


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