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Petitions with 75,000 Signatures Demanding Freedom for Soviet Jews Given to State Department

December 15, 1971
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Petitions bearing 75,000 signatures demanding freedom for Soviet Jews were received by a State Department official here yesterday. The official, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Richard Davies, promised to communicate the appeal to President Nixon and the Soviet Embassy. Davies met with five young Jews–three Americans and two Russians–who gathered the signatures in 34 American cities during a nine-week, 7000 mile tour of the Freedom Bus For Soviet Jewry which ended here Sunday.

The trip, sponsored by the American Zionist Youth Foundation and the American Jewish Conference on Soviet Jewry, started in Seattle, Wash., October 13. Travelling in the bus were Jay Blum, a 22 year-old medical student from the University of Pennsylvania; David Twersky. 21, an English major at City University New York; Mona Goldman, a 22 year-old registered nurse and graduate of the University of Pennsylvania; Ilya Volk. 27, from Riga and Tzipora Wolf. 25, from the Ural town of Perm in the Soviet Union. They said the purpose of the bus tour was to better acquaint American Jewish youth with the situation of Jews in the USSR.

The bus parked at Lafayette Park across the street from the White House Sunday, where some 500 Jewish youths gathered to sing Jewish and Hebrew songs. Five members of the American Nazi Party showed up with placards reading “Gas Jew Commies.” Police kept them a block away from the bus and apart from an exchange of jeers no incidents occurred.

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