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Carter Expresses Outrage at Beatings of 12 Soviet Jews

October 22, 1976
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Jimmy Carter expressed outrage yesterday at the beatings of 12 Jewish activists by Soviet police agents after a sit-in Monday at an administrative building of the Supreme Soviet in Moscow to protest the denial of exit visas.

The Democratic Presidential candidate expressed himself on this issue after being informed about the beatings by Eugene Gold, chairman of the National Conference on Soviet Jewry. In his response to Gold, Carter stated: “I fully share your sense of outrage and I will continue to speak out against such actions. Our relations with the Soviet Union cannot be conducted without taking into account the degree to which they comply with the Helsinki accords.”

As President, he continued, he would ask the Soviet Union publicly to comply with the human rights provisions of the Helsinki accord. “I would put the matter of freedom and free emigration among the top issues that would be discussed with the Soviet Union.”

In a related move, Carter sent a cable to the American Embassy in Moscow for delivery to Vladimir Slepak, the veteran “refusnik” who led the delegation of Jews at the sit-in and was one of those beaten by the Soviet police. In his telegram to Slepak, Carter stated:

“I have read with great concern about the treatment that you and some of your colleagues suffered recently. As you know, I have spoken out on this matter as Governor and during this campaign and have referred to your case by name. I want you to know of my deep personal interest in the treatment that you and your colleagues receive.”


According to Stuart Wurtman, president of the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews, and the NCSJ, those beaten, in addition to Slepak, were: Alexander Gvinter, 28, metal technologist; Boris Chernobilsky, 32, electronic engineer; Joseph Ahs, 32, surgeon; Mikhail Kremen, 39, radio engineer; Arkady Polishuck, 46, journalist; Yaakov Rakhlenko, 29, electrician; Leonid Tsipin, 25, lab technician; Leonid Shabashov, 30, engineer; Zachar Tesker, 30, sports coach; and Ilya Tsitovsky, 39.

In a related development, the Al Tidom Association reported today that A. Tzinober, a physicist in Riga, who applied for a visa June 28, 1975, has been told that his application will not be considered for 10 years. Soviet authorities also told the unemployed physicist that he will not get work unless he abandons moves to emigrate.

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