NEW YORK (Jul. 25)
Soviet authorities have taken a new series of actions aimed at stifling information about the situation of Jewish activists in the USSR, according to reports from the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry. The Kremlin is worried that the publicity surrounding their treatment of the activists will increase chances that the Jackson Amendment and other legislation restricting trade credits will be passed by Congress, the SSSJ reported today.
Last Friday the Soviet police searched the apartment of Moscow scientist Alexander Voronel, according to the SSSJ, and confiscated 1000 pages of documents about the condition of Soviet Jews and the scientists’ seminar which was to have taken place during President Nixon’s trip to the Soviet Union but was postponed until Sept.
A complaint to the prosecutor’s office that the confiscated objects were not listed on the police search warrant, and were therefore taken illegally, was rejected. The search was the first of its kind in Moscow in two years, and the SSSJ said activists fear the documentation taken listing names and addresses of Jews, might lead to another round of anti-Jewish trials.
The SSSJ also reported that the family of Moscow activist Victor Lapidus has been told by Soviet authorities that they can leave the country in “18 months.” Information reaching the SSSJ said that it is feared that this is an indication of a “long-term permission” tactic which will be used by the authorities, promising future visas in return for silence by the activists in the time before they obtain the visas.
JEWISH ACTIVIST BEATEN
In other developments, Vladimir Kisliuk, a 39-year-old engineer living in Kiev is now at home in a weakened state after being beaten by four KGB men June 19, the SSSJ said. Kisliuk, a Jewish activist who traveled to Moscow to consult with other Jews on how to appeal to President Nixon during his USSR visit, was met by the men after work last month and beaten severely.
The SSSJ said one of the KGB men told Kisliuk, “This is a lesson for going to Moscow. If you attempt to meet with activists there again, you won’t get off so lightly.” After being hospitalized, Kisliuk was suddenly dismissed, even though his doctor had told him earlier he would need specialized tests and would have to remain in the hospital. The same day that his doctor told him he would have to stay, another doctor, one he had never seen before, told him he was ordered to discharge Kisliuk, the SSSJ reported.
Jewish sources in the Soviet Union also reported that David Tchernoglass, who was serving a five-year sentence at a strict regime labor camp, was transferred to Vladimir, an even stricter place of detention. It is not known why he was transferred.