Moscow (Dec. 18)
Far-reaching concessions announced by the Soviet People’s Commissariat for Far Eastern Affairs with a view to checking the migration of population from Far Eastern areas because of the increasing feeling of tension between Japan and Russia, do not affect Bureya, the area set aside by the Soviet for the establishment of a Jewish autonomous region, it was learned today.
Because of feeling that settlers in the Russian Far East would find themselves caught in the arena of hostilities in the event of war between the two countries, there has been a noticeable emigration from the area. Soviet colonizing plans for this region have been proceeding amiss, largely due to this feeling.
In order to end the process of withdrawal of Russian population outposts and to encourage settlement in the Far East, the Soviet authorities announced that peasants in the Far East would be freed from the obligation of supplying corn, meat, soya beans and vegetables to the government for a five-year period. Farm collectives, it was announced, would be free from these duties for a ten-year period.
In Bureya and two other districts, the peasants will not receive these benefits, it was announced today. The farm collectives will be exempted from the corn levies but must continue to furnish the government with the other commodities.
Exclusion of peasants in the Bureya area from these benefits was explained as being unimportant since practically all the farms in that area have been collectivized. The concessions will go into effect January 1. A Jewish republic, forming one of the Soviet Union republics was to have been proclaimed in Bureya in 1935. The date for giving the region autonomous status has been altered to 1937 when it is expected that the Jewish population there will exceed half the total population.
A twenty percent increase in wages in the factories, the army and the “sovchozes”, the Soviet collectives, was announced. The increase is expected to improve the living conditions of many thousands of workers, non-Jews and Jews.