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Solzhenitsyn turns down US invitation as dissident

Alexander Solzhenitsyn turned down a White House invitation because he views himself as an artist, not a ''Soviet dissident,'' he said in a letter to President Reagan.

The Nobel Prize-winning writer said he was insulted by news reports -- never officially denied or corrected -- that presidential advisers counseled against a private meeting with him because he was viewed as an ''extreme Russian nationalist.''

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In the letter published by the Rutland, Vt., Herald, Mr. Solzhenitsyn told the President that he ''would be prepared to go for a substantive conversation with you . . . but not for a merely formal ceremony.''

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