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The World : Soviets Warned on Rights

May 16, 1985

Any hope for improvement in U.S.-Soviet relations, including arms control agreements, is "inextricably linked" to a better Soviet performance in human rights, the head of the U.S. delegation warned at a human rights conference in Ottawa. Richard Schifter, citing dozens of examples, accused the Soviet Union of willfully violating provisions of the 1975 Helsinki accords that committed 35 countries to improving basic human rights, including the right to freedom expression. "Our people have a right to wonder whether a country that fails to keep its word in matters unrelated to considerations of its security will do so when its security is at stake," Schifter said in apparent reference to the U.S.-Soviet arms control talks in Geneva.

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