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Blood Road

The Blood Road was a road built by prisoners of war.

2018-03-1215:05 Ida Beate Otterlei

The Blood Road was a nine kilometer long road between Langset and Saltnes. It was started in 1940 by Statens Vegvesen (the public Norwegian road company). The speed was accelerated from 1942 due to German pressure. Now the road should be built by forced labor, i.e. Yugoslavian political prisoners. On July 25 the first shipload of 463 partisans and other opponents arrived Botn.

Soon the road was named The Blood Road. During 1942 and 1943 close to 344 Yugoslavians were killed. The causes of death were shooting, hanging, maltreatment or total exhaustion. Mass executions also occurred. Until April 1943 the SS officer Fritz Kiefer was in command. He became herostratically famous for his brutality. Also Norwegian guards took part in brutal actions.

The blood cross in a hammer along the road is a very strong symbol of the sufferings. On the 14th of July 1943 Miloš Banjac was shot. His brother painted a cross in the hammer using Miloš´ blood.

Other articles on World War II sites:

Gyltvik

The field hospital at Klungset

Petterslager

The POW camp in Botn.
The cross was originally painted with Miloš Banjac´s blood.

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