NEW YORK (Sep. 10)
Valery and Galina Panov, the Leningrad ballet dancers, have been refused exit visas to go to Israel despite a promise by Soviet authorities three months ago that they would get them if they “keep quiet.” the National Conference on Soviet Jewry reported today.
Jerry Goodman, executive director of the NCSJ, said the Panov case was in no way related to security matters. “We are terribly disappointed at this latest disapproval.” he said.
The Panovs, who were fired from the Kirov Ballet Co. when they first applied for visas more than a year ago, were informed by an Interior Ministry official, Madame Petrova, that their applications had been rejected again. The reason given was the refusal of Mrs. Panov’s mother to approve her daughter’s leaving the country. Galina Panov is 24 and her husband is 34.
(The London Panov Committee which includes leading British and American artists expressed shock today at the refusal after an implicit promise that visas would be forthcoming. The Panovs were told that if they stopped making public appeals they would be allowed to leave. For that reason the Panov Committee has been quiet for the last three months. Now they have been betrayed by the Russians and a new campaign is planned, a spokesman said.)