Assistance with Departures, January-February 1977 (44.8)

<< No 44 : 16 March 1977 >>

On the evening of 5 January, the day after her search, Lyudmila Alexeyeva was telephoned by the district OVIR and given to understand that her departure had been authorized.

Alexeyeva had earlier given in documents for an exit visa but had not handed over references from the places of work of her husband and son, saying that she would bring them only when she received permission to leave. OVIR had refused to consider her case.

Now OVIR suddenly began hastily to draw up her exit visa.

On the day of Yu. Orlov’s arrest, 10 February, Alexeyeva’s telephone was cut off. A few days after this she was received by an official of the city OVIR, Sivets. Alexeyeva told Sivets that she would not leave until her typewriter, confiscated at the search on 4 January, had been returned to her and her telephone, which was needed by her mother, who was staying in the USSR, had been re-connected. Sivets replied that these matters were not her concern. The following day the telephone was reconnected. A few days later the typewriter was returned to Alexeyeva.

On 22 February Lyudmila Mikhailovna Alexeyeva left the USSR.


On 5 January two people came to Lydia Voronina’s flat. She was not at home. The visitors communicated through her neighbours that Voronina had been given permission to leave.

Recently Voronina had been researching the position of the Pentecostalist sect in the USSR (see section “Activities of Helsinki Groups”, CCE 44.10) for the Moscow Helsinki group.

At the end of January L. Voronina left the USSR.

Lydia Voronina had long been refused an exit visa. She was not given permission to leave by her mother — an official in the Ministry of Justice who took part, among other things, in drafting a document, with reference to which telephones are disconnected for undesirable conversations (CCE 27).


In February, soon after his search, Yury Mnyukh was summoned to the district OVIR (Mnyukh and his wife gave in their papers for an exit visa from the USSR about a year ago). At OVIR Mnyukh was told that his application was not being considered only because of the absence in his papers of permission or refusal from his mother-in-law, and that it would be sufficient to draw up a document in a lawyer’s office on the absence of any material claims by his mother-in-law.


In January, a member of the Lithuanian Helsinki group, Tomas Venclova, who for a long time had not received permission to leave, left the USSR.