It’s reported in the Washington Post that US President Obama will not get involved in ‘compassionate appeal’ allowing longtime prisoner Jonathan Pollard to travel to Israel after serving an unprecedented 30 years in federal prison.
By Tova Dvorin
A ban may still be placed on Jonathan Pollard to travel to Israel after his release from US prison, officials from US President Barack Obama’s administration revealed late Monday to the Washington Post.
Deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes stated last week that Pollard’s release, which was due for this month according to the terms of his parole, could be brought up during the meeting between Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Obama Monday night. Netanyahu, however, declined to answer questions regarding the matter.
Pollard, who was arrested on charges of spying for Israel in 1985 and later sentenced to life in prison, began his 31st year in jail this past November; he is due to be released at the end of the month.
At that time, the Parole Board of the Justice Department rejected Pollard’s parole, with senior U.S. officials involved in the case writing to President Barack Obama to complain that the decision was “deeply flawed”.
He has been suffering from poor health and has recently become the subject of a high-profile campaign for his release.
Much debate has raged over the conditions of his upcoming release, after news surfaced that Washington would ban Pollard from leaving the US for 5 years after his parole.
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