Operation Dre˛nica

(Croat village)

This was a German and Croat operation against the partisan forces of Marshal Josip Broz Tito in the Velika Kapela mountain region of the puppet state of Croatia in German-occupied Yugoslavia (23/31 January 1944).

The undertaking’s objective was the clearance of the partisans of the 13th Division from the supply roads in the Velika Kapela mountain region between Jesenica and Senj in northern Dalmatia. The operation was largely planned and implemented by the Germans, who had only limited Croat physical support, using elements of Generalleutnant Alexander Bouquin’s 114th Jägerdivision and Generalleutnant Johann Mickl’s 392nd Division (kroatisch).

The operation proceeded generally as planned, although the advance was severely hindered at times by partisan ambushes, the felling of trees across road, and the laying of mines supplied by the British. The advancing columns reached Senj on 31 January, taking the town without opposition.

No figures have been found for German losses, but according to a German report the partisans suffered 156 dead. The Germans took a considerable quantity of matériel including 34 trucks which the partisans had taken from the Italians in September.