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18 Jews Will Be Allowed to Return to the Soviet Union

Soviet Embassy officials confirmed today that 18 Russian Jews who have been living in a rotting Vienna tenement house for up to three years will be allowed to return Saturday to the Soviet Union. “They will leave on Saturday by train for Kiev,” a Soviet official told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

Communist sources, who reported that the Jews had received the visas earlier this week, said the Soviets granted the visas as a “goodwill gesture.” for the May Day holiday May 1. The 18 are part of 96 former Soviet citizens who emigrated to Israel but according to them, found life there too demanding and wanted to return. But the Soviets refused them visas because they had taken on Israeli citizenship.

The Russians rented apartments in a slum tenement building on Malzgasse Street from a Jewish businessman. They were often used as cheap labor because many had no official work permits from the Austrian authorities. The Russians here would not say if any of the remaining Malzgasse Jews were to be given return visas.

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