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Report on Soviet Jewry

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Jewish sources in the Soviet Union reported today that the trial of Leonid Zabelishensky opened in Sverdlovsk last night. The presiding judge said that the trial would last two or three days, which is viewed as quite unusual in cases where the charge is that of parasitism. It is feared in Jewish circles that the charge may be switched during the trial to something more serious. A request to the court to allow a lawyer from Moscow to act for the defense was rejected by the court.

Jewish sources in the Soviet Union also reported that a group of Jews in Tallin, capital of the Soviet Estonian Republic, published an open letter to the Common Market stating, in part: “You succumbed to threats of economic sabotage and blackmail. Your behavior will be interpreted as an inability to resist anything You have sold yourselves for a tanker of oil. You have forgotten Munich and the year 1938, and the consequences of Munich. We call upon those amongst you who still remember the lessons of recent history to stand up against this betrayal.”

In another development Jewish sources reported that Ida Nudel of Moscow, one of the Jewish activists who was facing a charge of “alcoholism” without the slightest basis for it, is now facing an additional charge of “prostitution.” This charge is based on the fact that she had put up at her home some activists who visited Moscow and had nowhere to sleep. A large number of Soviet Jews, some of them not even activists, have publicly protested against the monstrous charges which the KGB employed against Ida Nudel.

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