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Eight Arrested at Soviet Mission in Protest for Alling Refusenik

September 20, 1988
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Eight persons, four of them doctors and one a rabbi, had themselves arrested Sunday outside the Soviet Mission to the United Nations to dramatize the plight of Georgi Samoilovich, a Jewish refusenik suffering from cancer.

They blocked the entrance, in violation of a city ordinance, and were charged with disorderly conduct and released. The eight will stand trial in New York City Criminal Court on Nov. 15.

Samoilovich, 63, has been seeking an emigration visa for 11 year, without success, An American doctor who visited Moscow earlier this year diagnosed Samoilovich as having large-cell lymphoma, a form of cancer. The doctor, Richard Rosenbluth, offered to treat him at the Hackensack Medical Center in New Jersey.

But the Soviet authorities refused Samoilovich a medical visa. He also was denied treatment at the Blokhin Cancer Institute of Moscow, according to the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry.

Clad in white lab coats and holding a blown-up photo of Samoilovich, the doctors marched outside the Soviet premise while Russian officials photographed them from the roof. The eight were arrested after they sat down in front of the building and refused police orders to leave.

Taken into custody were Rosenbluth and Dr. Mark Helbraun of Hackensack Medical Center; Drs. Richard Andron and Victor Bordon of Englewood Hospital; Rabbi Avraham Weiss, SSSJ national chairman; Glenn Richter, SSSJ national coordinator; Dov Weiss of the Bronx and Michael Aaron of Englewood, N.J.

Samoilovich’s case has received international attention. Lord Plumb of Britain, president of the Parliament of Europe, raised the matter in Moscow with Soviet President Andrei Gromyko.

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