Justice Department Confirms It is Taking Steps to Permit Soviet Jews Now in Rome to Enter the U.S.

The Justice Department confirmed yesterday that it was taking steps to permit entry into the U.S. of Soviet Jewish emigrants now in Rome. Rep. Joshua Eilberg (D.Pa.) said earlier this week that he expected Attorney General Edward Levi to exercise his authority of parole for all Soviet Jews who arrived at the processing center in Rome by Dec. 31, 1976. There are some 4000 Soviet Jews in that category, according to Eilberg.

They left the USSR during 1976 with exit visas for Israel, the only destination for which the Soviet authorities issue visas. After crossing the border they declared their desire to come to the U.S. Eilberg, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship and International Law, said:

“I have been informed that the State Department has requested parole for all Soviet Jews who arrived at the processing center in Rome by Dec. 31, 1976 and that Attorney General Edward Levi will give his approval. I am very pleased by this decision since it will eliminate a cruel situation which had thousands of individuals and families living in limbo, not knowing where their permanent homes would be and forced to live on charity.”

Eilberg noted that persons who are admitted to the U.S. under parole are classified as refugees and given legal status after they arrive here.

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