Dr. Zand’s Exit Visa Revoked Hours After Issuance; Confident It Will Be Reinstated

An exit visa granted to Prof. Mikhail Zand, a Soviet Jewish scholar and activist, was revoked only hours after it was issued last Friday, it was learned today. But Dr. Zand told the newspaper Maariv by telephone from Moscow today that he was confident that the visa would be reinstated and that he and his family would arrive in Israel “soon.” The Jewish Telegraphic Agency in New York learned from reliable sources last Monday that Zand and 24 other Jewish activists were about to receive exit permits on the recommendation of a special police commission set up by Soviet authorities last March to speed up applications for emigration by Jews. Dr. Zand, an orientalist, was recently fired from his job. He told Maariv today that he received his visa last Friday and rushed to the Dutch Consulate which handles Israeli affairs in Moscow for his Israeli papers. He also visited the Austrian legation for a transit visa and the local airline office for reservations. He said that on his way home he was told that the authorities were looking for him. He returned to the visa office, where he said he was informed that his exit permit was revoked because of “complaints of undesirable activities on his part” that had to be investigated. Dr. Zand told the newspaper that the complaints were that he had contacts with foreigners and that many people visited his flat. He said that he had sold all of his possessions in anticipation of leaving for Israel and that his family was “sleeping on the floor.” However, he said, “We are sure that on Tuesday we shall get the permit again and we shall arrive soon.”

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