The new Soviet constitution has been hailed in the USSR as the 'manifesto of the century' by delegates to the special session of the Supreme Soviet.
SV: Kremlin, Moscow.
SV PAN: Members delegates clapping.
SV: Politburo on stage with Leonid Brezhnev walking to rostrum.
SV: Delegates clapping Brezhnev.
MV: Brezhnev speaking in Russian.
GV: Delegates clapping.
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Background: The new Soviet constitution has been hailed in the USSR as the 'manifesto of the century' by delegates to the special session of the Supreme Soviet. The constitution was formally presented to the Supreme Soviet, the country's legislature, on Wednesday (4 October) by Communist Party Chief Leonid Brezhnev.
SYNOPSIS: Reports said it was a foregone conclusion that the Kremlin meeting of the Supreme Soviet would adopt the so-called 'Brezhnev constitution's by the time the session ended on Friday.
Mr. Brezhnev was greeted by applause when he arrived at the special four-day session...and his keynote speech was greeted with unanimous approval.
The meeting, said Mr. Brezhnev, was an historical one. On the eve of the 60th anniversary of the October Revolution, the nation was going to adopt a new constitution. And that, he said, was no coincidence...there was a very strong link between the two events.
In essence, said Mr. Brezhnev, the new constitution was a balance sheet...a balance sheet of 60 years of development of the USSR.
Mr. Brezhnev told delegates that the constitution he was representing to them was proof that all the ideas of the October Revolution, and all the teachings of Lenin, were being put into effect throughout the Soviet Union.
During his address, Mr. Brezhnev also challenged Western concern over human rights...and he described the new constitution as the broadest guarantee of social and political freedoms ever drawn up in any country. A hundred and ten of the constitutions one hundred and 73 articles were amended before it got to the Supreme Soviet...showing, said Mr. Brezhnev, that the people themselves were its real authors.