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Province of Spalato

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Province of Spalato (or "Spalato province") was a district of the Italian Governorate of Dalmatia, during World War II. It was officially called in Italian: Provincia italiana di Spalato.


The puppet Independent State of Croatia ceded by the Treaties of Rome of 18 May 1941, extensive Adriatic coastal areas to the Fascist Kingdom of Italy. The ruling Italian National Fascist Party was a patron of Croatian fascist Ustasha Movement. Italy placed Ustasha leader Ante Pavelić as the head of Croatian puppet State after the dissolution of Yugoslavia in the April War 1941. Among the ceded areas was a City of Split in Dalmatia. Italy created some provinces (administrative districts) in that region, that lasted until September 1943. One was the province of Spalato. The administrative capital was the city of Spalato (Italian name for Split).The province had an area of 1075 Km2 and a population of 128,000 inhabitants. Most of the province's inhabitants were Croats, but there were even more than 3,000 Dalmatian Italians, concentrated in Spalato and Traù (Trogir). The island of Lastovo, ceded after World War I to Italy and renamed Lagosta, was united to the province. The Italians started immediately a process of forced Italianization (because related to the history of Venetian Dalmatia). Because of this, in summer 1941 there was a resistance movement of Croats against the Italian conquest, but without huge consequences until spring/summer 1943. However, in spring 1942 was created the football team "Associazione Calcio Spalato", that was ruled by the Italian FIGC in the Italian championships. Meanwhile, in 1941 and 1942 many Jews and some Serbs took refuge in the city, escaping from the nearby regions ruled by the Croatian Ustaše. In September 1943 the German army took control of the region from the Italians, who has surrendered to the Allies, and soon started a terrible guerrilla war between the Nazi occupiers and Josip Broz Tito's partisans. The province was cancelled in the same September and later annexed to Ante Pavelić's puppet Croatia.

Administrative subdivision

The 15 "Comuni" were (in Italian and in Croatian): Spalato / Split Blatta / Blato Castella Inferiore o Castel Vecchio / Kaštel Stari ili Donja Kaštela Castelli / Kaštel Sućurac Castel Vitturi / Kaštel Lukšić Comisa / Komiža Curzola / Korčula Lagosta / Lastovo Lissa / Vis Meleda / Mljet Solta / Šolta Traù / Trogir Vallegrande / Vela Luka
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