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Mitterand Calls on USSR to Rescind ‘ransom Legislation’

Francois Mitterand, the French Socialist Party leader, called today on the Soviet Union to “suspend at the earliest” the “ransom legislation” which aims at preventing Russia’s Jews from leaving that country. In a letter addressed to Soviet Ambassador Piotr Abrassimov, Mitterand said the French Socialist Party “view(s) this legislation as an additional discriminatory act against Soviet Jewry.”

The letter said further that “the Socialist Party protests in the name of human dignity against this measure and announces its intention to directly approach the Soviet authorities to have this decision changed.” Mitterand, who is First Secretary of the French Socialist Party, has been leader of the leftist opposition in parliament since last May’s Socialist-Communist agreement. His letter implied the support of the French Communist Party.