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The World : Sakharov Urges Amnesty

September 03, 1986

Soviet dissident Andrei D. Sakharov broke a silence on human rights violations with an ardent plea to Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev for the release of all prisoners of conscience. In a letter to Gorbachev, Sakharov--confined to internal exile in the city of Gorky--called for a general amnesty for all those deprived of their freedom because of their political or ideological beliefs. "I beg you to promote the release of these prisoners of conscience from their places of imprisonment and exile," he wrote, specifically mentioning prisoners held in psychiatric hospitals for ideological and political reasons. A copy of his letter was given to an American news agency by other dissidents.

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