RUSSIAN DISSIDENT WRITER
STRIPPED OF SOVIET CITIZENSHIP
September 7, 1976, the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR decreed that
Victor Sokolov be deprived of his Soviet citizenship for "activities
discrediting the rank (title) of a Soviet citizen." Victor Sokolov is a
dissident writer who has regularly published articles critical of the Soviet
Union since he was able to leave the USSR in Nov. 1975. In recent times, only
four other persons have been stripped of their Soviet citizenship by such
edicts of the Supreme Soviet: Valery Chalidze, Zhores Medvedev, Alexander
Solzhenitsyn, and Vladimir Maximov.
Sokolov received news of the Supreme Soviet edict from the San Francisco
consulate on Nov. 17th. In a written statement he says, "The rash decision
of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, stripping me of Soviet
citizenship, I accept as a high honor, in that this act of the Soviet
government places me on one plane with such people as Alexander Solzhenitsyn,
Vladimir Maximov, Valery Chalidze, and Zhores Medvedev. I call this action of
the Supreme Soviet rash because it is evident that I do not merit such a high
honor. But I will strive to."
of Russia, Victor Sokolov had been heavily involved in the dissident movement,
writing critical articles for samizdat, the underground press. Several of his
articles made their way out of the Soviet Union and were published in the
Russian press in the west or broadcast over Radio Liberty. He was also a member
of Amnesty International in Moscow.
1975, Sokolov met and married an American working for the U.S. Embassy. As the
spouse of an American, Victor Sokolov was able to apply and receive permission
to leave the USSR. He is now living with his wife in Santa Cruz, Calif., where
he is teaching advanced Russian at the University of California and continues
to write for various Russian language publications.