• Short Summary

    A controversial three-day world conference on Soviet Jewry opened in Brussels on Tuesday (17 February) against a backdrop of strong Soviet and Arab criticism.

  • Description

    A controversial three-day world conference on Soviet Jewry opened in Brussels on Tuesday (17 February) against a backdrop of strong Soviet and Arab criticism.

    Conference organisers say they hope to draw attention to the plight of 750,000 of the Soviet Union's 2.5 million Jews, who, they say, are being barred from emigrating.

    The Soviet Union has denied the charges, and on Monday organised a rival news conference in Brussels tell reporters that 98.4 percent of all Soviet Jews wanting to leave could do so and that only 1,4000 applications for exit visas were still outstanding.

    Protests also came from Arab League Information Ministers meeting in Cairo. A communique issued from their talks said the Brussels conference was aimed to mislead Jews into moving to Israel and strengthening their settlements.

    "This can lead to new wars," the communique said.

    More than 1,200 Jews from 32 countries are attending the conference which is being chaired over by former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir.

    Influential U.S. Senator Frank Church, a senior member of the United States Senate foreign relations committee, is also present.

    Security surrounding the conference site....the Palais des Beaux Arts....is extremely tight.

    SYNOPSIS: Security was stringent at Brussels's Palais des Beaux Arts on Tuesday when a controversial three-day world conference on Soviet Jewry opened.

    The opening session was held against a backdrop of Soviet and Arab criticism.

    Organisers say the conference's aim is to draw attention to the plight of 750,000 of the Soviet Union's 2.5 million Jews who, they say, are being barred from emigrating.

    The Conference's honorary President is former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir. She was one of the early arrivals on Tuesday. The meeting has sparked reaction from the Soviet Union, and a rival news conference was staged by the Novosti Press Agency in Brussels on Monday.

    Reporters were told that 98.4 percent of all Soviet Jews wanting to leave the county could do so, and that only 1,400 applications for exit visas were still outstanding. Arab League Information Ministers meeting in Cairo were also angered by the Jewish claims. They issued a communique from their talks which said the conference was aimed at misleading Jews into moving to Israel and strengthening" their settlement. "This can lead to new wars", the communique said.

    More than 1,200 Jews from 32 countries attending the opening session and the welcoming addresses were preceded by hymn singing and prayer.

    Frank Church, a senior member of the United States Senate's foreign relations committee, was amongst the delegates.

    Organisers claim 115,000 Jews have left the Soviet Union since the first World Jewry conference held in 1971.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA92WIZ2K0Y9M7PBRXCNRQZ3SEE
    Media URN:
    VLVA92WIZ2K0Y9M7PBRXCNRQZ3SEE
    Group:
    Reuters - Incuding Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    18/02/1976
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:44:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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