Auschwitz anniversary marked as peace again shattered by war Auschwitz-Birkenau survivors and other mourners have commemorated the 78th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi German death camp in the final months of World War II. The observances Friday come amid the horror of war again shattering peace in Europe. The site is located in the town of Oświęcim in southern Poland, which during World War II was under the occupation of German forces and became a place of systematic murder of Jews, Poles, Roma and others. In all, some 1.1 million people were killed at the camp, most of them Jews, before it was liberated by Soviet troops on Jan. 27, 1945. Among those who attended commemorations is Doug Emhoff, the husband of U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris.