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Group Doesn’t Want Soviet Sister City

February 5, 1990

GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) _ A group of people in this southern Oregon community are saying ″nyet″ to establishing a sister city with the Soviet town of Rubtsovsk.

″While we feel profound sympathy for the subjugated people of the U.S.S.R., as well as the peoples of the 49 Communist-dominated nations of the world, we feel no sisterly kinship with the city of Rubtsovsk,″ a petition being circulated states.

The petition goes on to say that sister city projects are ″a danger to America’s national security and a terrible insult and discouragement to oppressed people who live under the Communist yoke.″

Gedney Webb, who drafted the petition, says those who sign it are opposed to any formal relations with a ″totalitarian regime.″

Cindy Patterson, who has visited Rubtsovsk in central Siberia and who has been active in the sister city campaign, said the opposition group is ignoring the future.

″I really look at this from the aspect of securing a safe future for my children,″ said Patterson.

She said establishing ties with Soviet cities has improved relations at a personal level, avoiding much of the political friction created by the differing systems.

Webb plans to present his petition to the City Council on Wednesday, when it considers the sister-city proposal.

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