NEW YORK (Sep. 4)
Two more American book publishers have been denied visas to the Soviet Union to participate in the Fifth Moscow International Book Fair beginning September 10.
Robert Bernstein, president of Random House and chairman of the Helsinki Watch Committee, a human rights group which monitors compliance with the 1975 Helsinki accords, and Jeri Laber, a staff member of the Association of American Publishers and executive director of Helsinki Watch, were denied visas by the Soviet government. Bernard Levinson, the president of the Association of Jewish Book Publishers, has also been denied a visa. All three have participated in previous Moscow Book Fairs. Denial of the visas has taken the publishing industry by surprise, according to reports here, since Soviet officials promised earlier that there would be no problems with visa approvals.