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“Hands up !”


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In the night from Saturday 14 April to Sunday 15 April 1945, a group of firefighters sit in the attics of buildings on the Guldenstraat and try with all their might to keep the walls wet so that they do not catch fire. Several surrounding buildings are already on fire. The fire brigade manages to save the buildings from destruction.

Afterwards, one of the firefighters leaves for a bakery to get some bread. A Canadian soldier suddenly pushes the door open, puts a rifle to his chest and yells "hands up." The soldier thinks he has a German soldier in front of him. The firefighter promptly replies with:,, Firebrigade!”

,,OK.!" is the Canadian short answer. He turns and closes the door with a goodbye. The firefighter is stunned. What is that soldier doing on his own in this part of the town where German soldiers are still present? Even the Zuiderdiep has not yet been liberated.

Ten Canadian tanks from the Fort Garry Horse make an outflanking movement that Sunday, April 15 at 6:00 PM via the Kromme Elleboog towards the Boteringestraat. The next morning at seven o'clock they open fire on the house of the Queen's Commissioner where German soldiers are defending themselves. The tanks are supported by troops from the Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal. Around 1 pm the Germans withdraw to the eastern part of the city.