Israel appealed to the Soviet Union on Monday (10 July) to withdraw charges against Jewish dissident Anatoly Shcharansky, on trial for his life in Moscow on charges of treason.
GV PAN TO Demonstrators
SCU Demonstrator speaking in English with shots of supporters signing petition OVERLAID (8 shots)
CU/GV People at Wailing Wall (5 shots)
GV INT Russian church in Jerusalem with cleaners removing graffiti from wall (2 shots)
SCU Priest speaking in English
ORGANISER: "We're collecting signatures to support the trial of Anatoly Shcharansky, who's standing trial for treason for the fact that he's running the movement for ... (indistinct) ... in Russia. We will send these signatures to Ambassadors throughout the world, and to President Carter, to tell them that we well not stand silent while our brothers in Russia are standing trial for death because they would like to emigrate to Israel."
REPORTER: "Do you know the reasons why they picked the Russian church for this?"
PRIEST: "As I was informed by the police after the questioning of that man, it was because of the trial in Russia against Anatoly Shcharansky. But, because the russian church is separated from the state in Russia, we don't have any relation to this case, and we can't make any influence or anything about this."
President Carter came under heavy Congressional pressure on Tuesday (11 July) to make a strong response to the Soviet Union in protest against the trials of Soviet dissidents. Several members of Congress accused the Carter administration of inaction over the trials, which began on Monday (10 July).
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Background: Israel appealed to the Soviet Union on Monday (10 July) to withdraw charges against Jewish dissident Anatoly Shcharansky, on trial for his life in Moscow on charges of treason. All parliamentary parties, except the pro-Moscow Communist faction, voted for a resolution appealing to world governments to support the Israeli demand that Shcharansky be released and allowed to emigrate. Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, a group barricaded themselves inside a Russian Orthodox church protesting at the trial.
SYNOPSIS: Elsewhere in the city, demonstrators showed their anger at the trials.
Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin has called on other countries to intervene in the trials of both Shcharansky and Alexander Ginzburg, who also went on trial on Monday (10 July).
A group of Israelis broke into Jerusalem's Russian Orthodox church and sprayed anti-Soviet slogans on the walls. They stayed for several hours until evicted by the police. They said they had chosen the church because it was the only official Soviet representation in Israel.