14.11 News in brief

No 14 : 30 June 1970

[1]

IVANO-FRANKOVSK. On 1 June 1970 Valentin Moroz was once again arrested. The charge were brought under Article 62 of the Ukrainian Criminal Code (which corresponds to Article 70 of the Russian Code).

V. Moroz served a term from 1965 to 1969 in the Mordovian camps (Dubrovlag) under Article 62 of the Ukrainian Code. A few months before the end of his sentence new proceedings were taken against him: he was charged with being the author of “A Report from the Beria Reservation”. The case was closed, the charge not having been substantiated, and on 1 September 1969 Moroz was released [see 10.15 (10) ] on completion of his sentence.

A search carried out at the end of April 1970 provided the grounds for his re-arrest. Books published in the Western Ukraine before 1939 and manuscripts of his own work – “Moses and Datan” (a reply to Yevdokia Los), “A Chronicle of Resistance” and “Among the Snows” – were confiscated from Valentin Moroz.

[2]

We report details about P. M. Yegides (in Chronicle 13.10 (1) he is incorrectly called Igides).

Pyotr Markovich Yegides is a Master of philosophical sciences. From the age of 16 he worked as a teacher in the countryside, and then he went to the front as a volunteer. After the war he spent six or seven years in the camps, and after his rehabilitation worked for six years in a collective farm (kolkhoz), three of them as chairman (he was elected against the will of the district committee of the Party).

Until the end of 1969 he taught at Rostov University. Then he resigned in connection with moving to Moscow. He was arrested in Moscow on the orders of the Rostov-on-Don Procuracy, and despatched to Rostov. Searches were carried out, in Moscow at Yegides’ home and at his son’s, and at his former place of residence in Rostov.

P. M. Yegides’ wife, Tamara Vasilevna Samsonova, has been informed that proceedings have been initiated under Article 190-1 of the Russian Criminal Code.

[3]

At 8.35 a.m. on 15 June a group of twelve people were detained in the vicinity of a [12-seater] AN-2 aircraft (bound for Priozyorsk) at “Smolny” airport in Leningrad. Later they were formally arrested.

They were : Edward Kuznetsov (Riga), Alexander Murzhenko (Lazovaya, Ukraine), and Yury Fyodorov (Moscow); E. Kuznetsov’s wife Silva Zalmanson and her two brothers, one an officer of the reserve (his name is not known to the Chronicle), the other 19-year-old Isaiah (all of Riga); Mr. and Mrs. Khnokh (Riga), Penson, an artist (Riga); Mark Dymshits, a pilot aged 45, his 15-year-old daughter (who is now in a children’s home) and his wife (Leningrad) [see Chronicle 17.6].

(Kuznetsov, Murzhenko and Fyodorov have previously served terms under Article 70 part 1 and Article 72 of the Russian Criminal Code.)

On 15 June the newspaper Evening Leningrad, and on 16 June Leningrad Pravda, reported that “a group of criminals has been detained at Smolny airport in an attempt to seize a passenger aeroplane. An investigation is under way.”

On 15 June eight people were arrested in Leningrad (Gilel Butman, Gelfeld, Solomon Dreizner, Lassal Kaminsky, L. Kornblit [Korenblit], Vladimir Mogilyover, David Chernoglaz). Leningrader Lev Yagman was arrested on his way to Odessa.

On 15 June searches were carried out, under Article 64 (a) of the Russian Criminal Code (Betraying the Motherland) [see 17.6], at the homes of V. Svechinsky, D. Drabkin and V. Slepak in Moscow. That day there were 41 searches in Leningrad, and other searches in Riga and Kharkov.

[4].

The investigation into the case of Vyacheslav Bakhmin, Olga lofe and Irina Kaplun [see 11.7] is continuing under Article 70 of the Russian Criminal Code.

In connection with this case the home of Sergei Genkin in Moscow was searched on 10 May. Samizdat materials were confiscated. Next day Genkin was summoned for questioning by the investigation department of the Moscow KGB.

In connection with the same case searches were carried out in Moscow on 20 May at the home of Elena Kharlamova and at her place of work. Nothing was confiscated as a result of the searches. After the searches Kharlamova was repeatedly summoned to the Moscow KGB. At one of the first interrogations they demanded from her an undertaking not to leave Moscow; they threatened to take proceedings against her. When Kharlamova asked in what legal capacity she was being summoned for questioning, the investigator replied that this was not important.

On 2 June the forensic-psychiatric examination of Olga loffe at the Serbsky Institute came to an end. She was judged to be of unsound mind. The diagnosis was “chronic schizophrenia”.

On 3 June Irina Kaplun was taken to the Serbsky Institute to undergo forensic-psychiatric examination.

In the middle of May an out-patient examination of Vyacheslav Bakhmin was carried out, which judged him to be of sound mind.

[5]

At the beginning of June the investigation was concluded (Chronicle 11.9) into the case of Natalya Gorbanevskaya (Chronicle 12.9 (8) ), the materials being signed in accordance with Article 201 of the Russian Code of Criminal Procedure.

[6]

LENINGRAD. Boris Shilkrot, 22, fifth-year student of the Leningrad Electro-Technical Institute, was arrested on 12 August 1969 (Chronicle 11.15 (19) ) for the composition and circulation in 1968 of an “Appeal” to students of the Institute to raise their voices in defence of democracy and protest against the trial of Ginzburg and the others; and for the preparation and possession of samizdat (Cancer Ward and First Circle by Solzhenitsyn, Into the Whirlwind by Evgenia Ginzburg, a translation of William Shirer’s book The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, works by [Yuly] Daniel, the Open Letter from I. Yakhimovich, etc.). The investigation under Article 70 of the Russian Criminal Code was conducted from August to December 1969. The investigator was KGB captain N. V. Golubkov. During the investigation B. Shilkrot was held in the investigation prison of the Leningrad KGB.

The case was heard in the Leningrad City Court in January 1970. The judge was L. I. Ivanov. The trial, which lasted three days, was held behind closed doors: sentence was delivered in open session. Shilkrot was sentenced to three years of strict-regime.

In April this sentence was confirmed by the Russian Supreme Court.

[7]

In Uzbekistan new trials of Crimean Tatars have taken place.

TASHKENT. Nuri Abduraimov, born 1940, was arrested in January 1970. He was convicted under Article 191-4 of the Uzbek Criminal Code (which corresponds to Article 190-1 of the Russian Code). He was charged with taking part in the compilation of Crimean Tatar Information Bulletins Nos 77, 79 and 80. He was sentenced to two years’ deprivation of freedom in an ordinary-regime camp.

The appeal court deleted from the charge two of the three Bulletins mentioned, but left the sentence unchanged.

TASHKENT. Nurfet Marakha, 28-year-old engineer, married with two children. Arrested in May. Charged under Article 191-4 of the Uzbek Criminal Code for taking part in the compilation of Crimean Tatar Information Bulletins Nos 69 and 70. The trial was fixed for 24 June but postponed because of the non-appearance of five witnesses from Moscow.

ANDIZHAN. S. Lelyalov, aged about 35, a doctor (Chronicle 13.10 (12) ) and cancer-specialist, was arrested in April at the airport , when he was about to fly to Moscow for treatment and with a hospital booking in his hand.

Police officials detained him, demanded to see his papers and later charged Lelyalov with striking one of them (Article 192-2 of the Uzbek Criminal Code, corresponding to Article 191-2 of the Russian Code). The Procurator demanded five years’ deprivation of freedom. The court changed the charge to Article 191-1 of the Russian Code and sentenced Lelyalov to three months’ imprisonment. The appeal court substituted a suspended sentence of a year.

[8]

On 12 May [1970] the Russian Supreme Court heard the appeal in the case of Vladimir Gershuni (Chronicle 13.1). The appeal court confirmed the sentence of the Moscow City Court. Gershuni is still being held in the treatment division of the Butyrka Prison.

[9]

In Kiev on 4 June [1970] the Ukrainian Supreme Court heard the appeal in the case of Arkady Levin (Chronicle 13.5). The court of appeal confirmed the sentence of the Kharkov Region Court. The appeal was heard without a defence counsel.

[10]

In the middle of May [1970] the Russian Supreme Court heard the appeal in the case of Valeria Novodvorskaya (Chronicle 13.2). The Supreme Court confirmed the sentence of the Moscow City Court. In the middle of June Novodvorskaya was despatched to hospital.

[11]

In the middle of November 1969 the Russian Supreme Court heard the appeal in the case of Mikhail Ryzhik (Chronicle 10.3). The court quashed the sentence of the Moscow Region Court and delivered its own: a suspended sentence of one year.

[12]

KIEV. In the case of Bakhtiyarov (Chronicle 13.8) the court of appeal left the sentence unchanged (3 years in ordinary-regime camps).

Besides the literature mentioned (Chronicle 13), the charge against Bakhtiyarov also referred to Svetlanin’s book The Far-eastern Conspiracy [Dalnevostochnyi zagovor], published abroad in the 1930s [Commentary 14], in which Colonel Svetlanin tells of his participation in “Blucher’s anti-Soviet conspiracy”.

[13]

LENINGRAD. As reported in Chronicle 11.10, Vladimir Borisov, member of the Action Group, who was convicted under Article 190-1 of the Russian Criminal Code and judged to be of unsound mind, has been placed in the city’s Special Psychiatric Hospital.

At the hospital on 7 May 1970 Borisov’s wife talked to the doctor who was treating him. The doctor did not give her name, ostensibly not having heard the question. She declared that she was treating Borisov by regimen, since he was in no need of treatment by drugs. Diagnosis: residual signs of an organic disease of the central nervous system with changes in the personality and deterioration of the intellect. The doctor found, it strange that Borisov was reading a lot and making notes. “But in general he’s very calm and friendly, it’s interesting to talk to him.” But when asked by his wife when he could be expected to be discharged from hospital, the doctor replied: “There’s no question of that: at least another two years, and then we’ll see.” During the conversation it became clear that the doctor had a detailed knowledge of the content of letters written to Borisov by his wife.

[14]

[RIGA] It has become known that Ilya Rips has been deprived of his Riga residence permit. The grounds are that, he has allegedly left Riga for an indefinite period.

I. Rips, who attempted self-immolation on 13 April 1969 (see Chronicle 7.13 (1) ), is by court order in the psychiatric hospital of normal type in the town where he is permanently resident (Riga).

[15]

[DUBROVLAG] On 4 May in Camp 3 of the Mordovian camps, [a certain] Baranov, while attempting to escape, was first wounded and then finished off by several shots in full view of the prisoners. Baranov was mentally ill, but in spite of prisoners’ demands he was not treated.

As a sign of protest, several witnesses of the murder announced a hunger strike. Three of them L. Kvachevsky, [Vyacheslav] Aidov and Yurkevich, were immediately brought to camp-trial for violation of the regulations and sent to Vladimir Prison to complete their sentences; each of them has about two years to serve there. The remaining eighteen participants in the hunger strike are still being held in the intensified-regime barrack ([in Russian] BUR).

[16]

In issue 5 for 1970 the journal Towards a New Life, organ of the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs, published the following announcement: “This journal has frequently published letters from our warder readers, proposing a change in the name of their occupation.

“This question has been decided. From now on senior warders and warders in investigation prisons, ordinary prisons, special psychiatric hospitals, educational-labour colonies and the Moscow City Soviet’s juvenile remand centre, will be known respectively as senior controllers and controllers.”

[17]

In summer 1969 in Vladimir, the “Union of Independent Youth” (see Chronicle 8.11), which declared itself to be legal, was broken up; its organiser, was Vladimir Borisov. It was reported In Chronicle 11.15 [12] that V. Borisov had been sent for psychiatric examination.

On 19 May 1970 Vladimir Borisov hanged himself in the hospital section of Butyrka Prison [in Moscow].

[18]

[LENINGRAD] On 22 January 1970 in Leningrad Gennady Trifonov, a young worker at the Kalinin factory, set fire to himself by the statue of Lenin in front of the Smolny Institute [city Party headquarters]. His motive: the hard material conditions of life. Doctors succeeded in saving Trifonov’s life, but his subsequent fate is unknown.

[19]

[MINSK] On 7 April Maksakov, a senior school-pupil, was killed in Minsk. According to the official version he was killed by a drunken hooligan. Leaflets demanding democratic liberties were found on him A few days later, on the day of Maksakov’s funeral, a group of senior pupils from Minsk schools organised a demonstration in the city-centre, outside the Central Committee building of the Belorussian Communist Party in Engels Street.

Gathering in front of the “News of the Day” cinema, the demonstrators burnt a circle in the asphalt, stood in it and chanted slogans demanding freedom of speech and of the press. When the police, who had hurried to the spot, started to disperse the demonstrators, they began to shouts “This isn’t Czechoslovakia, you won’t break us up.” According to rumours some of the demonstrators have been expelled from their schools. Komsomol meetings have been held in Minsk schools with the object of “heightening [political] consciousness”.

[20]

[KIEV] On 26-27 March leaflets were scattered in the Kiev Polytechnic and Engineering-Construction Institutes protesting against the expulsion of Solzhenitsyn from the Union of Writers and the persecution of the Ukrainian writer Dzyuba.

[21]

Frants Taurin, who controlled the meeting of the Ryazan section of the RSFSR Union of Writers at which Solzhenitsyn was expelled [see 11.1], has been confirmed as a member of the editorial board, and head of the prose section, at Novy mir – in place of E. Dorosh, who “has been released at his own request”.

[22]

On 6 May Julius Telesin, the mathematician and poet-translator, left Moscow by air for Israel. In our country Telesin showed courage and persistence in defending the civil rights of those persecuted for their beliefs.

[23]

On 14 May Arkady Victorovich Belinkov died of heart failure in the USA (New Haven hospital).

Belinkov was born in Moscow in 1921. He studied at Moscow University and at the Gorky Literary Institute. For his graduation thesis “A Blueprint of Feelings” [Chernovik chuvstv] he was arrested and charged with the composition and circulation of anti-Soviet works, with being in contact with foreigners and with organising a conspiracy with the aim of overthrowing the regime. He was sentenced to be shot, but later the execution was commuted to eight years in a camp.

In 1950, a few months before the end of his sentence, when he was in a camp near Karaganda [Kazakhstan], Belinkov was sent to prison on the denunciation of one of the prisoners and received a second term – 25 years in the special camps. The reason: three books written by Belinkov in the camp which he had wanted to send out. The books ware destroyed before their author’s eyes.

In 1956 A. Belinkov returned from imprisonment as a first-category invalid [the most seriously disabled]. He began to give lectures at the Gorky Literary Institute, but in 1958 he was dismissed. He continued to work on the writings of Bulgakov, Olesha, Tynyanov and Platonov. In 1960 Belinkov published the book Yury Tynyanov, which has now been withdrawn from libraries on the instructions of Glavlit. His book on Olesha came out in samizdat. Two extracts from it, “The poet and the fat man”, were published [in Ulan-Ude, Buryat ASSR, Siberia] in the journal Baikal (Nos. 1 and 2, 1968).

In 1968, together with his wife, Belinkov became a political émigré and settled in the USA, He gave lectures on Russian literature in American universities and continued to work on his books. Recently A. Belinkov was preparing for publication a research work on A. I. Solzhenitsyn, which was to form the third part of his “Trilogy” (Tynyanov, Olesha, and Solzhenitsyn).