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Cooperative Effort Between Hias and the Ins Facilitates Pre-passover Arrival of 21 Iranian Jewish Re

April 4, 1985
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Special cooperative efforts between HIAS, the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and the Intergovernmental Committee for Migration (ICM) have made possible the pre-Passover arrival of 21 Iranian Jewish refugees from Vienna, HIAS reported today. The participants in the mini-exodus, who landed at New York’s Kennedy Airport this afternoon, have been awaiting U.S. immigration processing in Vienna for anywhere from seven to eight months.

Due to HIAS’ special efforts, the INS, in an unusual procedure, issued its March visa approval list earlier than usual. In addition, ICM–the agency responsible for refugee movements throughout the world–agreed to add a special group flight to its schedule to facilitate the early April arrival.

According to Robert Israeloff, president of HIAS, “all stops were pulled out to make this a pre-Pesach departure. For these 21 Iranians, the words liberty and redemption are not merely idealistic symbols, but refer to actual and recent events in their lives. We were determined to make their migration complete before Pesach, and to see them reunited with their families in a free nation, so that they might be together to mark this ancient celebration of Jewish liberty.”

For HIAS, 1984 and the first quarter of 1985 have seen a marked acceleration of Iranian Jewish refugees arriving in Western Europe. During 1984, some 450 Iranian Jews registered for immigration processing with the HIAS office in Vienna, close to 100 in Rome and smaller numbers in Paris, Athens and Geneva, HIAS reported.

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