Museo del Ricordo to remember victims of the Foibe.

The Italian cabinet of premier Giorgia Meloni on Wednesday approved a bill to establish a new museum in Rome to commemorate the victims of the Foibe massacres.

The creation of the Museo del Ricordo was proposed by Meloni and culture minister Gennaro Sangiuliano to recall the mass killings in Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Istria and Dalmatia by Tito’s partisans, both during and after world war two.

In a statement, the culture ministry said the aim of the museum is to “preserve and renew the memory of the tragedy of the Italians and of all the victims of the foibe, of the exodus of the Istrians, Fiume and Dalmatians from their lands after the second world war, to reconstruct and narrate the history of the Italians of Istria, Fiume and Dalmatia and the more complex story of the eastern Italian border.”

“The creation of the museum is a historical duty towards the Istria, Fiume and Dalmatia exiles who suffered under Tito’s communist dictatorship” – Sangiuliano stated – “These tragedies must not be forgotten. They are an important part of Italian history and must be known and understood by new generations.”

A total of €8 million has been allocated to establish the Museo del Ricordo, for the period 2024-2026, and the Lazio region will provide a building to host the museum.

The news comes the week before the Giorno del Ricordo, an annual day of remembrance on 10 February to commemorate the victims of the Foibe massacres as well as the exodus of Italians who left their homes in Dalmatia and Istria in the years after 1943.

The mass killings, which occurred in 1943 and again in the weeks before and after the end of the war in 1945, were committed mainly against the local ethnic Italian population by Yugoslav communists who occupied the Istrian peninsula during the last two years of the war.

The exact number of victims is unknown but there may have been up to 15,000 killed, with many of them tortured, shot or pushed to their deaths into the deep, narrow carsic sinkholes or chasms known as foibe.

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