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Remembering the Refusenik Movement

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN (CNN) — Driven by desperation, Marina and Lev Furman stepped out of their home in Leningrad and took a 20-minute walk into uncertainty. Trailed by KGB agents, they bundled up and set out in the weak winter light for Palace Square, site of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution. They brought signs demanding freedom. And […]

Honoring Vladimir Bukovsky: A Champion of Human Rights

December 30, 2012 marked the 70th birthday of Vladimir Bukovsky – one of the most prominent pioneers of the Movement for Human Rights. Vladimir started his civil service back at school. It is difficult to overestimate the role of this man who underwent the man-made hell of special psychiatric institutions, years of prisons and concentration camps and deportation […]

Limmud FSU Conference Fosters Jewish Culture

Jerusalem Post– By Daniel K. Eisenbud The Limmud FSU Conference in the western Ukrainian city of Uzhgorod may very well be the intellectual Jewish Woodstock of the former Soviet Union. Attracting over 600 Jews from all walks of life across the country, as well as from surrounding nations, it is a four-day meeting of the […]

Saturday’s Demonstration in Moscow Shows Opposition’s Determination

Last Saturday, December 15th, Russian leaders of the political opposition took part in an unsanctioned demonstration. This protest, which took place in Lubyanka Square near a monument to victims of Soviet political repression, was an act of defiance against a law signed by President Putin in June that fines participants $9,000 and organizations $18,000 for […]

Obama Signs Magnitsky Bill Into Law

Read the UCSJ President’s Message Regarding UCSJ’s work with this bill here. Dec 14 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Friday signed into law a bill that modernizes U.S. trade relations with Russia by ending a Cold War-era provision, but also punishes Russian human rights violators. Russia has objected strongly to the human rights component […]

IRF Roundtable Letter on Declining Religious Freedom Conditions in Kazakhstan

UCSJ, along with other members of the International Religious Freedom (IRF) Roundtable, sent a letter to the UN regarding our concern for declining religious freedom conditions in Kazakhstan. Click the above link to view it, or read an excerpt below: Prof. Dr. Heiner Bielefeldt Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief Office of the […]

President’s Message Regarding the Magnitsky Bill

To our friends of the UCSJ, President Obama has signed the Magnitsky bill, which passed in Congress by significant numbers.  It is a great victory for human rights and for the UCSJ.  Last August, the UCSJ gathered ten human rights groups and many individuals all of whom signed on to a letter to over 150 […]

An Oral History of the Rally to Save Soviet Jewry

Tablet Magazine How We Freed Soviet Jewry Twenty-five years ago today, a rally of 250,000 people changed the fate of Jews worldwide. An oral history. By Allison Hoffman Originally published December 6, 2012. (American Jewish Historical Society)   Twenty-five years ago today, an estimated quarter of a million Americans, most of them Jews, flooded the Mall […]

Anti-Semitic March in Kharkov, Ukraine

The following description of an anti-Semitic march that took place in Kharkov (the second largest city in Ukraine) is a translation of an article originally posted in Russian. The original can be accessed here. During the 2012 Ukrainian parliamentary elections, the nationalistic party “Svoboda” (Freedom) organized a rally. It was announced to be a protest […]