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Tuesday, 11 December 1973

Senator KANE (NEW SOUTH WALES) - Is the Minister for Foreign Affairs aware of the plight of the Russian ballet dancer Valery Panov who was dismissed from the Kirov Ballet and has been subjected to interrogation and imprisonment by the Soviet secret police after applying for a visa to emigrate from the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics to Israel? Has his attention been drawn to reports that Mr Panov sees public protests in the West as the best hope of securing his freedom to emigrate to Israel? Is he aware of the protest to the Kremlin by leading Western artists, including the eminent British actors Lord Olivier and Paul Scofield designed to win visas for Mr Panov and his wife to emigrate to Israel? In view of the Minister's general statements to the United Nations Assembly this year supporting the international agreements on human rights, will he undertake to protest to the Soviet Government specifically about its refusal to let the Panovs go to Israel? If so, will he make public the text of his protest?

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