ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS – During his meeting with the US president this week,.Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu asked Donald Trump to remove the restrictive parole conditions placed on convicted, but finally released, spy Jonathan Pollard and to allow Pollard to immigrate to Israel.
According to the report in Yisrael Hayom, this was the second time Netanyahu had raised the issue of Pollard’s freedom with President Trump.
Netanyahu reportedly told Trump that allowing Pollard to move to israel would be an appropriate gesture in honor of Israel’s 70th anniversary.
Trump did not respond to Netanyahu’s request, but reportedly instructed senior government officials to examine the matter in depth.
Pollard was convicted for spying for Israel in 1987 and given a life sentence. He was granted parole after serving 30 years in prison, more than anyone convicted of comparable offenses, in 2015 during which he was not allowed to attend his father’s funeral. Once on parole, he was placed under restrictive conditions, including a curfew from 7:00 PM to 7:00 AM. He is forced to wear an electronic monitoring device. Any computer he uses is monitored. The restrictions have prevented Pollard from finding employment, and even from attending Shabbat services at a synagogue on Friday nights.
Pollard is also not allowed to leave the country under the parole restrictions.
Pollard’s sentence and parole conditions have been criticized as vindictive and completely out of proportion for the crime committed and the length of the sentence served in prison.. No other US citizen has ever received a life sentence for spying for an ally.
Successive Israeli governments have called for Pollard’s release. However, no American Administration has considered the case.
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