Soviet Jews Free to Be Jewish, Claims Chief Rabbi of Mosow

Adolf Shayevich, the Chief Rabbi of Moscow, claimed here that Soviet Jews have complete freedom to practice their religion.

Shayevich replied to questions at a session of the United Nations Human Rights Commission devoted to human rights and the status of international human rights covenants. He was brought here from Moscow by the Soviet delegation to the Commission.

According to Shayevich, who heads Moscow’s Choral Synagogue, the majority of the two million Jews in the USSR are non-believers by choice, not by force. He said that any Jew who wished to live by the laws of Moses and the Torah was free to do so.

The question of freedom of religion in his country is interlinked with questions of ethics and standards, Shayevich said. He urged everyone to cooperate in the matter of human rights, but with greater objectivity than has been shown until now.

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