Soviet authorities, obviously stung by the high-level reception given exiled dissident Valdimir Bukovsky in the United States. denounced him today as an anti-Soviet criminal and "scum."
The attack by Tass news agency commentator Alexei Petrov was seen as a thinly disguised appeal to President Carter to call off his expected meeting next week with Bukovsky. After listing the dissident's alleged criminal activities, Petrov said, "This information might be of interest to those who wish to converse with this renegade."
"It would seem there are quite enough criminal elements of all kinds in the United States . . . but obviously there are too few criminals of their own for some people, so they decided to court imported criminals," Petrov wrote.
Bukovsky was freed from a Soviet prison in December in exchange for Chile's release of imprisoned Communist leader Luis Corvalan. Bukovsky spent 12 of his 34 years in Soviet prisons for "anti-Soviet" activities.
Tass also reported the release of Watergate burglar E. Howard Hunt from prison and used it as an example of the failings of the American judicial system.
The system, Tass said, "which shows amazing magnanimity toward high-ranking lawbreakers, is truly ruthless toward dissenters - all those who actively come out against the U.S. aggressive course in the international arena, against national oppression, racial discrimination and social injustice."
The following other developments concerning dissent in the Soviet bloc were reported:
Two Czechoslovaks have been arrested after circulating the Charter 77 human rights manifesto, dissident sources in Prague said. They identified the two as Vladimir Lastuvka, 35, and Alex Machacek, 30.
Exiled Soviet dissident Andrei Amalrik, who was detained while demonstrating outside the presidential place in Paris on Wednesday, met for 90 minutes with French legislators.