Soviet Cruise Ship to Dock in Haifa

The first Soviet-registered passenger liner to visit Israel since Moscow severed diplomatic relations 23 years ago is due to arrive in Haifa next month.

The 22,000-ton Anatoly Sabinov, on a 35-day cruise that began at the Black Sea port of Odessa, will dock in Haifa from Oct. 5 to 8.

Its 700 passengers from the Soviet Union, reported to include members of the Supreme Soviet, will have three days to tour Israel.

Shipping circles say no Soviet-flag passenger vessel has called at an Israeli port since diplomatic ties were broken in 1967. In that interval, the Soviet Union has entered the booming international cruise market on a large scale.

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