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Focus on Soviet Jewry

The National Conference on Soviet Jewry learned Wednesday of the first cases of direct police action against Soviet Jews in more than a year. These occurred when some Jews in Kharkov, who had applied for emigration, recently had their homes searched by the police. Among them was Solomon Greenberg who applied for an emigration visa six months ago and was refused last month on the grounds that his wife is employed in a security-classified plant.

On January 28, the 38-year-old Greenberg, who lives with his wife, daughter and mother, had his apartment searched for more than five hours by the police. The search warrant (Number 10-002) was for handwritten and printed correspondence containing “slander” and “lies” about the Soviet Union. Thirty-one pieces of allegedly “slanderous” printed material were confiscated by the police from Greenberg’s apartment, including a Hebrew study book and a Hebrew-Russian dictionary.

After the search, Greenberg protested to the police that the confiscated items did not correspond with the material specified in the search warrant. As of now, Greenberg has not been officially charged by the Soviet authorities. In releasing the news, the NCSJ said that such direct police action against Jews is reminiscent of the period preceding the Leningrad and other trials of late 1970, and expressed concern that it is being resumed by the Soviet authorities.

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