Free Pollard rally (archives)
Photo: Adi Sastiel

Esther Pollard to Peres: I don't want to be a widow

While convicted spy is hospitalized in North Carolina, his wife urges president to work towards securing his immediate release 'before it is too late'

During a meeting with Jonathan Pollard's wife on Sunday, President Shimon Peres said he may file an official request later this evening with his American counterpart Barack Obama to pardon the convicted spy.


Pollard was admitted to a hospital in North Carolina after his condition deteriorated over the weekend.


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Peres is expected to receive the presidential Medal of Freedom from Obama in June, but a petition signed by more than 10,000 Israeli citizens, including artists and political figures, urged the president to work towards securing Pollard's release beforehand.


אסתר פולארד, פרס וח"כ אורי אריאל, היום בבית הנשיא (צילום: אורי לנץ, פלאש 90)

MK Uri Ariel (L) with Peres (Photo: Uri Lentx, Flash 90)


Pollard, a United States Navy analyst convicted of passing information to Israel, has served 26 years of a life sentence.


Pollard's wife, Esther, told Peres that she realizes that he cannot bring forward his meeting with Obama, but added that her husband's condition didn't give her the luxury of waiting that long.



"I appeal to you as the wife of Jonathan Pollard who doesn't want to become his widow," she said.


"I'm asking you to ask Obama today to reduce Jonathan's sentence immediately. The Americans, headed by Obama, understand the significance of the holiday of freedom (Passover); they understand the value of freedom and compassion. I ask that you turn to President Obama today and request that he reduce Jonathan's sentence immediately, so that if he recuperates he won't have to go back to jail."


Pollard's condition is apparently not related to the kidney surgery he underwent in August.


During the meeting, which was held at the President's Residence in Jerusalem, activists presented Peres with a letter signed by 80 Knesset members demanding that he work towards securing Pollard's release.


Earlier, Peres discussed the Pollard issue with Shas spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef "There are other American considerations that I am not familiar with," the president told Shas' spiritual leader.



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פרסום ראשון: 04.08.12, 14:07
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