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Hundreds in Protest Rallies

Hundreds of people have been participating in spontaneous demonstrations outside the Austrian Consulate here. Malcolm Hoenlein, director of the Greater New York Conference on Soviet Jewry, said the reaction against Austria’s decision to close the reception center for Soviet Jews is greater than anytime since the Munich massacre.

Last night more than 150 persons participated in a midnight vigil sponsored by Young Israel, Queens Council for Soviet Jewry and the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry. SSSJ members demonstrated at Carnegie Hall today and then marched along Fifth Avenue to the Consulate a mile away. Jewish community groups in Brooklyn and elsewhere plan to rally tomorrow afternoon in front of the Austrian tourist offices on Fifth Avenue at 45th St. Emergency meetings are also being scheduled by synagogues on Long Island and elsewhere in the New York area.

In a leaflet distributed by SSSJ today which noted that it was the 32nd anniversary of the slaughter of Jews at Babi Yar, the group declared: “For the Austrian government to completely abdicate to the demands of–or volunteer to, as the Austrian Interior Minister has disclosed–two Arab terrorists to shut down the Schoenau transit camp suddenly brings back the long shadows of the Nazi past. Austria’s moral responsibility cannot be so conveniently terminated.”

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