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Sakharov, Bonner Cheered by Orlov's Release, They Tell Relatives in U.S.

October 07, 1986|Associated Press

NEWTON, Mass. — Soviet dissident Andrei D. Sakharov and his wife, Yelena Bonner, on Monday sent regards to the publisher of their smuggled memoirs and said they are pleased that dissident Yuri Orlov was allowed to leave the Soviet Union.

The couple spoke to relatives in Newton in a 40-minute conversation relatively free of the fadeouts that interrupted previous calls, the family said.

The family was concerned that Soviet authorities might interrupt the call as a result of news that Sakharov and Bonner's memoirs are being published in the West.

"But judging from the conversation . . . so far the Soviets have not reacted in any way to the announcement of the book," said Efrem Yankelevich, the Nobel Prize laureate's son-in-law.

Sakharov and Bonner live in internal exile in the remote city of Gorky. The monthly phone calls, made regularly since June, were agreed to when Bonner visited the West for medical treatment earlier this year.

The couple said they learned about the memoirs' publications and the release of Orlov through their short-wave radio.

At the annual Frankfurt book fair last week, Yankelevich disclosed that Sakharov's memoirs have been smuggled in installments to the West for release by U.S. publisher Alfred A. Knopf.

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