London (Sep. 24)
Mikhail Suslov, secretary and veteran member of the Soviet Communist Party Central Committee, has promised personally to investigate the case of Viktor Brailovsky, the Jewish refusenik sentenced to five years exile in central Asia.
Suslov gave the promise to Dr. Maurice Miller, one of 10 British Labor Members of Parliament visiting Moscow last week as guests of the Presidium of the Soviet Communist Party.
Miller, the only Jewish member of the delegation, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that he also presented Suslov with a file on Brailovsky, who was flown to his place of exile last week.
THE YOFFE AND YAKIR CASES
Miller also described a two-and-a-half hour private meeting he had with two eminent re-fuseniks and their wives — Alexander Yoffe and Evgeniy Yakir. The meeting took place Monday, the last day of the six-day visit, at the Yoffes’ apartment in southern Moscow.
Both men have been trying for several years to emigrate to Israel, but according to Miller they are “almost in despair” at the delays they have encountered. Miller said he raised their cases with academician lgor Lebedev, “who appeared to be sympathetic.”
Yakir, 50, is the son of Gen. Maurice Yakir, a founder of the Soviet Air Force, who was ex-ecuted with his brother, Army Gen. Ion Yakir, in Stalin’s bloody purge of the Soviet military high command in 1937.
After applying to settle in Israel in 1973, Yakir lost his academic post and has made a living coaching tennis players, stringing tennis rackets and translating. He and his wife have a 26-year-old son.
Yoffe, a 43-year-old mathematician, was given a more junior job after applying to emigrate four years ago. Married, with two children, their emigration application comes up for review again in 1983.
I MILLION SOVIET JEWS WOULD GO TO ISRAEL
According to Miller, both men estimated that more than one million Soviet Jews would try to leave for Israel if they were not frightened about the consequences of applying. Currently, some 300,000 people have been formally invited to join their relatives in Israel and are awaiting visas.
They also told Miller that in their view, Jewish would-be emigrants would benefit from an improvement in American-Soviet relations and that the present deterioration in East-West ties was to the detriment of Soviet Jewry. Before visiting Moscow, Miller, a member of the Western European Union, had talks in Washington with officials at the State Department and Defense Department.