The Slovenia Times

Ceremony to honour centenary of the last battles on the Isonzo Front


The ceremony will see high diplomatic attendance from Germany, Italy, Austria and Hungary as well as descendants of victims of this bloody theatre of WWI.

Ahead of the ceremony with a mass in Tolmin, diplomatic representatives will lay wreaths at the Austro-Hungarian cemetery near Tolmin and at the Italian ossuary in Kobarid, where NGOs from Slovenia, Austria, Hungary and Germany already honoured the victims yesterday.

The main ceremony in Tolmin will be addressed by Heinz Fromm of the German War Graves Commission and Austrian Ambassador to Slovenia Sigrid Berka, while the German Ambassador to Slovenia Klaus Riedel will also take part.

On 12 May 1917, the Italian forces launched the 10th out of 12 battles of the Isonzo Front, one of two bloodiest offensives of the 93-kilometre WWI front line along the Soča river (Isonzo in Italian).

Fighting along the Isonzo Front took place from 23 May 1915 to 9 November 1917, during which time altogether one an a half million soldiers were killed, wounded or captured.

The bloodiest confrontation was the 11th battle of the Isonzo, in which a total of around 50,000 soldiers were killed on both sides.

The German ossuary, where today's ceremony will take place, was built between 1936 and 1938 as the final resting place of around 1,000 German soldiers who died in the 12th battle, in which Germany joined Austria-Hungary to break the front at Kobarid (Caporetto in Italian) and push the Italians far into their territory.


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