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Soviet Jewish Activists Urge Support of Jackson Amendment

February 14, 1979
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Sixty-eight Jewish refusniks from nine Soviet cities have appealed to Congress to continue to support the Jackson Amendment, which they declared to be ” the only legislative enactment which, to some extent at least, acts as an obstacle to the unbridled tyranny of the Soviet authorities in their emigration policies.” The text was relayed by London activist Michael Sherbourne to the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry and Union of Councils for Soviet Jews.

The document is a response to a bill introduced into Congress by Sen. Adlai Stevenson III (D. III.) which the groups said “would, in effect, destroy the Jackson Amendment, ” which links trade credits with freer emigration.

The Stevenson bill would reduce the standard Compliance from an “assurance” by the country concerned to a “determination” by the U.S. President, would limit Congress from the present yearly review to once every five years, and would increase maximum credits from $300 million to $2 billion.

The refusniks described continued harassment of emigration applicants and stated the Jackson Amendment to be “an act of historic significance in the spirit of the finest democratic and humanitarian traditions of the American people.” The Amendment, the refusniks noted, “now appears to be the only means of bringing about a real limitation of tyranny and abuse of authority, in this sphere which is of such importance for all humanity.”

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