Niš operation (Serbian language:Нишка операција, Bulgarian language:Нишка операция
) was an offensive operation of the Bulgarian army, supported by Yugoslav Partisans against German Army Group E in order to secure the left flank of the Third Ukrainian Front of the Red Army.
It was held from 8 to 14 October 1944. Second Bulgarian Army, in cooperation with Yugoslav People's Liberation Army and IX Air Corps of the Red Army was ordered to destroy the German troops and to seize Niš. Its enemy was
7th SS Volunteer Mountain Division Prinz Eugen, or about 21 500 people from 13 infantry battalions, featuring 154 guns, 164 mortars, 38 tanks and 18 aircraft. Their task was to cover the retreat of 300,000 German soldiers from the composition of the Army Group "E". Bulgarian troops entered the brunt along the River Southern Morava. On October 10, the Sofia armored brigade, consisting of about 150 tanks, most of which Panzer IV, and the rest Panzer 38(t) and Panzer 35(t), aided by ca. 40 Leichter Panzerspähwagen, and 50 Sturmgeschütz III, penetrated in the defense of the Germans and forced them to retreat west of the Southern Morava. On 12 and 13 October Bulgarian troops continue pursuit. On October 14 parts of the VI Infantry Division, using the jab from the south of the armored brigade seized Niš and completely pushed the Nazis. Losses of the Wehrmacht amounted up to 5200 killed and 3850 prisoners of war, but they managed to hold its position in the Vardar corridor to the withdrawal of the remaining German troops.
- ↑ Nedev, Nedyo (2007). Три държавни преврата или Кимон Георгиев и неговото време. София: „Сиела“. pp. 651. ISBN 978-954-28-0163-4.
- ↑ Peychev et all., A. (1975). Bulgaria's participation in the defeat of Nazi Germany (1st ed.). Durzhavno Voenno Izdatelstvo. pp. 65.
- ↑ Christopher Chant. The Encyclopedia of Codenames of World War II (Routledge Revivals; 2013); ISBN 1134647875, p. 209.
- ↑ Elisabeth Barker et al., British Political and Military Strategy in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe in 1944, Springer (1988); ISBN 1349193798, p. 249.
- ↑ Jozo Tomasevich. War and Revolution in Yugoslavia: 1941-1945, Volume 2, Stanford University Press (2001); ISBN 0804779244, p. 156.
- ↑ Матев, К. Бронетанкова техника 1935 – 1945, С., Анжела, 2000.