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Police Disperse Jews Outside Moscow Synagogue During Passover

April 17, 1974
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Jewish sources in the Soviet Union reported today that Passover was celebrated in many parts of the USSR. In Moscow the synagogue was crowded for the services. After the service on the first night of Passover, the militia moved into Archipova Street, where the Moscow synagogue is located, and dispersed groups of young Jews. Among the homes where the seder was celebrated were those of Prof. Alexander Lerner, Leonid Koshevoy, and Leonid Bielopolsky. A number of Soviet Jews sent Passover messages to Israel. One of the messages was signed by 213 people. Nine Jews in Kiev sent a message to the Jewish community in Birmingham, with whom they were in contact over the years.


Jewish sources also reported that two Novosibirsk Jewish activists, Yuri and Anna Berkovski, were arrested in their hometown on April 12. No reason was given for their arrest, and their whereabouts remain unknown. Berkovski and his wife applied for exit visas to go to Israel two years ago.

He was a naval officer and retired 10 years ago. After retirement, he taught at an institute of radio technology. Anna Berkovski was a school teacher. Both of them lost their jobs two years ago as a result of their applications for exit visas. Their small daughter, who is five, was handed over to her grandmother after the arrest of her parents. The arrest of these two innocent people has caused deep resentment among Soviet Jews.

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