Rivlin sends Knesset letter asking US to free Pollard

Knesset Speaker sends letter signed by leaders of 9 Jewish political parties, asking US President Obama to free Israeli agent.

December 16, 2010 14:51
1 minute read.
Jonathan Pollard

Jonathan Pollard 311. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Knesset speaker Reuven Rivlin sent a letter signed by all the Jewish political party leaders to US President Barack Obama to free convicted Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard from jail on Wednesday, after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu refused to take the letter with him a month and a half ago during his visit to the US, Channel 10 reported on Thursday.

"This letter expresses the position of the majority of the Israeli public that supports the immediate release of Pollard," Rivlin wrote to Obama.

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The letter was signed by nine Jewish party leaders representing 109 of the Knesset's 120 members.

Pollard’s wife Esther reacted with outrage last Tuesday to Cabinet Secretary Zvi Hauser’s refusal to change the government’s approach in its efforts to bring about her husband’s release.

At a meeting of the Knesset State Control Committee, Hauser resisted calls from MKs across the political spectrum the previous day to change their strategy, which he said was well thought-out and ideal under the current circumstances.

“The only thing that has never been tried by any government of Israel is an open call for Jonathan’s release,” Esther said. “For the cabinet secretary to claim that a public call for Jonathan’s release and an official request is too risky and would somehow jeopardize the efforts to free him is twisted logic and morally bereft. Jonathan is willing to take the risk and to bear any consequences of an open call for his release by the Prime Minister of Israel.”

Gil Hoffman contributed to this report

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