Babi Yar (Russian: Бабий Яр, Babiy Yar; Ukrainian: Бабин Яр, Babyn Yar) is a ravine in the Ukrainian capital Kiev and a site of massacres carried out by German forces and local collaborators during their campaign against the Soviet Union.
The most notorious and the best documented of these massacres took place from 29–30 September 1941, wherein 33,771 Jews were killed. The decision to kill all the Jews in Kiev was made by the military governor, Major-General Kurt Eberhard, the Police Commander for Army Group South, SS-Obergruppenführer Friedrich Jeckeln, and the Einsatzgruppe C Commander Otto Rasch. It was carried out by Sonderkommando 4a soldiers, along with the aid of the SD and SS Police Battalions backed by the local police. The massacre was the largest mass killing for which the Nazi regime and its collaborators were responsible during its campaign against the Soviet Union and is considered to be “the largest single massacre in the history of the Holocaust” to that particular date, surpassed only by Aktion Erntefest of November 1943 in occupied Poland with 42,000–43,000 victims and the 1941 Odessa massacre of more than 50,000 Jews in October 1941, committed by Romanian troops.
Victims of other massacres at the site included Soviet prisoners of war, communists and Roma. It is estimated that between 100,000 and 150,000 people were killed at Babi Yar during the German occupation.