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Entire Soviet Municipality Dismissed for Antisemitism: Police Chief to Be Put on Trial

The entire administration of an important city in the Soviet Union, the town of Derbent in the Republic of Daghestan, has been summarily dismissed and several of the officials are to be put on trial for antisemitic discrimination against the local Jewish population.

There was a shortage of kerosene in the city recently, as a result of speculators buying up all the available stocks. The City Council decided that a search should be made in the homes of all Nepmen, whom it accused of having illegally hoarded quantities of kerosene. The Police Chief, Borsukoff, and the Chief of the Fire Brigade, Garden, confined their search, however, to the Magale, the Jewish section of the town. When the Jews of Derbent protested against this discrimination to the State Attorney, Matakoff, the Attorney refused to give them any satisfaction. The Jews thereupon carried their grievance to the Regional Office of the Communist Party, which conducted an investigation and brought in the following decision.

In view of the fact that all classes of the Derbent population have Nepmen and speculators in their midst, the search made in the Jewish quarter only puts an undeserved stigma upon the Jews of Daghestan. Moreover, such action is counter-revolutionary, because it obscures the real issue, which is to fight against speculators, regardless of race. All members of the City Council are therefore removed from their posts. The State Attorney Matatoff is reprimanded, and it is recommended that he should be transferred to another region.

A leading official named Dagayef is also reprimanded, and is to be removed to another district. The Chief of Police, Borsukoff, and the Chief of the Fire Brigade, Garden, have been ordered to be put on trial as being the principal initiators of the move against the Jews. Borsukoff has also been expelled from the Communist Party.