Briceni City Hall
Briceni City Hall
Flag of Briceni
Official seal of Briceni
Briceni is located in Moldova
Location within Moldova
Coordinates: 48°22′N 27°06′E / 48.367°N 27.100°E / 48.367; 27.100Coordinates: 48°22′N 27°06′E / 48.367°N 27.100°E / 48.367; 27.100
districtBriceni District
 • Total10 km2 (4 sq mi)
39 m (128 ft)
 • Total7,314
 • Density730/km2 (1,900/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+3 (EEST)

Briceni (Romanian pronunciation: [briˈt͡ʃenʲ], Ukrainian: Брича́ни, Yiddish: בריטשאן, romanizedBritshan, Polish: Bryczany) is a city in northern Moldova. It is the seat of Briceni District.


At the 2004 census, the city had a population of 8,765. At the 1930 census, there were two localities: Briceni Târg (literally Briceni Fair), and Briceni Sat (literally Briceni village), and at the time they were part of Plasa Briceni of Hotin County.

Ethnic composition
Ethnic group 1930 census 2004 census 2014 census
Briceni Târg Briceni Sat
Moldovans - - 3,344 3,165
Romanians 57 153 67 254
Jews 5,354 63 52 N/A
Ruthenians and Ukrainians 144 2,773 4,271 2,719
Russians 52 98 737 551
Gypsies 185 106
Bulgarians 1 26 15
Gagauzians 14 14
Poles 10 64 3 62
Germans 2 8 66
Greeks 5
Hungarians 1
Total 5,625 3,160 8,765 7,314
Native language
Language 1930 census 2004 census
Briceni Târg Briceni Sat
Romanian 64 123 N/A
Yiddish 5,348 63 N/A
Ukrainian 123 2,790 N/A
Russian 83 162 N/A
Polish 16 N/A
German 6 6 N/A
Bulgarian 1 N/A
others N/A
Total 5,625 3,160 8,765


The town has been also called: Berchan, Bricheni, Bricheni Târg, Bricheni Sat, Britchan, Britchani, Britsiteni.

A village, approximately 50 kilometres (30 mi) to the east to the city, is also known as Briceni. It is at 48° 22´ north latitude and 27° 42´ east longitude, which puts that town 174 km (108 mi) north northwest of Chişinău.

Jewish community

Tomb stones at the Jewish cemetery in Briceni
1817 The town (then a fair) had 137 Jewish families. Another 47 had previously left when the village was partly destroyed by fire.
1847 Jewish school opened.
1850 Briceni had one of the largest Jewish communities in Bessarabia.
1885 Jewish hospital founded.
1897 There were 7,184 Jews in Bricheni (96.5% of the total population)
1898 The town had 7,303 Jews out of a total population of 8,094. There were 972 Jewish artisans, most of whom were furriers who produced and exported up to 25,000 fur overcoats and caps per year. 25 families were dedicated to gardening and to producing tobacco. About 700 Jews were day laborers, earning 10–30 kopeck per day.
1924 125 Jews were occupied in agriculture on 64 km² (approx. 1,600 acres) of land, most of it (5 km²) held on lease.[dubious ][citation needed]
1930 5354 Jews (95.2% of the total population). There was a Hebrew Tarbut school.
1940 Jewish population grew to about 10,000.[dubious ][citation needed]
June, 1940 Briceni, along with the rest of Bessarabia was occupied by the USSR. Most Jewish property and community buildings were confiscated. The only synagogue was saved because the Soviets decided to use it as a granary. About 80 Jews, mostly community leaders, were exiled to Siberia.
July 8, 1941 German & Romanian troops passed through the town, murdering many Jews. Jews from the neighboring towns of Lipcani (then Lipcani Târg) and Sokyriany (then Secureni Târg) were brought to Briceni.
July 28, 1941 All Jews were dispatched across the river Dniester (outside Bessarabia) and several were shot en route. When they arrived in Mohyliv-Podilskyi, the Germans "selected" the old people and forced the younger ones to dig graves for them. From Mohyliv-Podilskyi the rest were turned back to Otaci and then on to Secureni-Târg. Hundreds died en route. For a month they stayed in the ghetto there, only to be deported again to Transnistria in late 1941. All the young Jews were murdered in a forest near Soroca.
After 1945 Only about 1,000 Jews returned to Briceni at the end of the World War II.

The Jewish cemetery of Briceni contains some 3,250 remaining tombstones though it is heavily overgrown and many are illegible. It is located in the eastern vicinities of the town, left of the road R11 leading to Ocnița.


On 5 December 2022, during a Russian bombing campaign against Ukraine during the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, a missile fell within the borders of Moldova into an orchard near Briceni.[2] This was only the second such incident in Moldova, as previously a Russian rocket had fallen into the village of Naslavcea.[3] Later, on 14 January 2023, another missile fell into the village of Larga.[4][5]


International relations

Twin Towns – Sister Cities

Briceni is twinned with:


  1. ^ Results of Population and Housing Census in the Republic of Moldova in 2014: "Characteristics - Population (population by communes, religion, citizenship)" (XLS). National Bureau of Statistics of the Republic of Moldova. 2017. Retrieved May 1, 2017.
  2. ^ "MAI, cu noi detalii despre despre racheta căzută la Briceni: "La moment nu există niciun risc pentru cetățeni"" (in Romanian). Unimedia. December 5, 2022.
  3. ^ "O rachetă rusească a căzut pe teritoriul R. Moldova. Mai multe case din Naslavcea, avariate". Radio Europa Liberă Moldova (in Romanian). October 31, 2022.
  4. ^ Tanas, Alexander; Holmes, David; Popeski, Ron; Oatis, Jonathan. "Moldova says missile debris found in north of the country". Reuters. Retrieved January 15, 2023.
  5. ^ "Rocket debris found again in Moldova, from war next door". Associated Press. Retrieved January 15, 2023.

External links

  • 'Jewish Cemetery'
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