NEW YORK (Feb. 24)
The Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry reported today that Mark Nashpitz and Anatol Sharansky were among seven Moscow Jews arrested today for demonstrating for exit visas outside the Lenin Library near the Kremlin. According to reports by eye-witnesses, between 30-40 uniformed and plainclothes police surrounded the demonstrators and seized their placards which read, “Freedom for the Prisoners of Zion” and “Visas, Not Prisons.” The demonstrators were taken into the library building by the police.
The demonstration, the first since Moscow repudiated its 1972 trade agreement with the U.S. last month in protest over the linkage of trade with Soviet emigration practices, was witnessed by Western newsmen who reported that the KGB parked three large buses outside the library apparently to prevent passers-by from seeing the arrests.
At the same time, Jewish sources here reported that a group of 80 Jews circulated among Western reporters the text of a Purim message to the people of Israel which they said had been rejected by Soviet postal authorities. The message stated: “From Jews who have fought to live with you. We believe no Humans will break the will of our people for unification.”