TEL AVIV (Sep. 15)
Alexei Magarik, the last Prisoner of Conscience, has been released from a Siberian labor camp after serving little more than a year of a three-year sentence and is now on the two-day rail journey with his wife to their home in Moscow, according to reports received here Tuesday.
The 28-year-old Jewish activist was sentenced last year on claims by the police that they found drugs in a cigarette package he was carrying when he was searched at the Tiblisi airport in the Georgian Republic. He began serving his term in June 1986.
Magarik was quoted as telling friends after his release that he hoped he would soon be allowed to leave the Soviet Union for Israel. Release from prison does not automatically guarantee an exit visa. Several prominent former POCs, including Ida Nudel and Vladimir Slepak, are still waiting for exit permits though they have been out of prison for some time.
Magarik, a cellist and clandestine teacher of Hebrew, was first denied permission to emigrate in 1984. His early release has been attributed to pressure from the West.