[3.3; 9.1] – Letter from US congressmen (376 signatures) concerning emigration of 2,000 Soviet Jews and response outlined by International Department (20 pp). [R 14 July 1983]
English translation by Marta D. Olynyk, December 2010
[Translator’s notes are bracketed, handwritten text is italic] [handwritten numeral “109” at the top of the document]
Endorsed by Comrade B. N. Ponomarev
[Underneath is an illegible signature followed by a date in Roman numerals: 19/VIII/1983 and the stamped number “19837”]
[This page contains seven handwritten lines, all illegible except for the first line: “To Comrade B. N. Ponomarev” and one word in the seventh line: “reaction” and the stamped number “19837.”]
[At right: a line of illegible numerals and letters ending
with the stamped number “19837.”]
[At left are four illegible handwritten lines angled at the
first three lines of the typewritten text.]
At a meeting between a group of deputies of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR and the official delegation from the House of Representatives of the US Congress visiting the USSR on the invitation of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR from 2 to 10 July 1983, the American Congressmen were given detailed information [and] exhaustive explanations in connection with the question of the departure from the USSR of Soviet citizens of Jewish and other nationalities (ethnic Germans, Armenians, et al.) during a discussion of the “human rights” question.
Seeing as the members of the Congress sought in their speeches to present incorrectly the fact of the creation in the Soviet Union of the AntiZionist Committee of the Soviet Public, the nature of that committee’s activities was also explained to them.
The Congressmen expressed gratitude for the provided explanation. But before [their] departure from the Soviet Union they handed over a letter addressed to Comrade Iu. V. Andropov, with the signatures of 376 members of the House of Representatives of the US Congress and lists appended to it of Soviet citizens of Jewish nationality (more than 2,000 individuals), who allegedly wish to leave the Soviet Union. In handing over the letter, the head of the delegation, T. [Tom] Foley, declared that he is doing this because the members of the delegation had promised the authors of the letter to carry out their assignment.
392 [next to which are two illegible characters]
25 [ illegible word, probably “July”] 1983
[Continuation of document. In the top-right corner is the handwritten numeral “112,” underneath which is the number
2, crossed out.]
In connection with the fact that the Congressmen received crucial explanations, we consider it unwise to react in any fashion to the submitted letter. It might be possible to forward the submitted lists as information to the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the USSR.
We request agreement.
Deputy Head of the International Department of the CC CPSU (signature) (B. Shaposhnikov)
19 July 1983
[At top center of page: a line of handwritten numbers “01198-202; below which, at right, is an illegible line of numbers.]
The letter from the group of members of the American Congress addressed to Iu. V. Andropov was handed over by the delegation from the House of Representatives of the US Congress, who are in the Soviet Union on the invitation of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR from 2 to 10 July 1983.
Reader of the International Department of the CC CPSU
(signature) (D. Muravev)
11 July 1983
In the letter addressed to Iu. V. Andropov the group of members of the US Congress expresses regret in connection with the “attempts” of the Soviet government “to present incorrectly the question of Jewish emigration from the Soviet Union.” The authors write that they reject the consolidation of an anti-Zionist committee, recently created in the USSR, “concerning the completion for the most part” of the reunification of Jewish families. The authors state that they are aware of the names of tens of thousands of Soviet Jews, who are seeking repatriation or reunification with their families.
The authors urge the Soviet Union to comply with all the articles of the Helsinki Agreement, international conventions on human rights, and to allow Soviet Jews who are seeking repatriation or family reunification to leave the USSR.
The authors also request a halt to the dissemination of anti-Semitic declarations, which the anti-Zionist committee and other Soviet organizations are disseminating under the pretext of the struggle against Zionism.
The authors call for urgent attention to be paid to these questions because they are giving rise to growing concern on the part of the US Congress and the American people.
The letter is signed by 376 American Congressmen. Appended to the letter are lists of Soviet citizens of Jewish nationality, who allegedly want to leave the Soviet Union.
(Signature) D. Muravev