US Jewish leaders, Kerry discuss Pollard

“People sincerely brought up the issue, but not in a way to make it uncomfortable for the secretary,” a source said.

August 13, 2013 03:19
Jonathan and Esther Pollard

Jonathan and Esther Pollard 370. (photo credit: Courtesy of Justice4JP)


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American Jewish leaders raised the issue of US President Barack Obama commuting the sentence of Israeli agent Jonathan Pollard Thursday night at the White House, a source present at the meeting said Monday.

The source said Pollard’s fate was not raised in the formal part of the meeting with Secretary of State John Kerry, but Jewish leaders brought him up in informal discussions before and after the official discussion. The source declined to reveal which of the participants mentioned Pollard.

“People sincerely brought up the issue, but not in a way to make it uncomfortable for the secretary,” the source said.

The Jewish leaders who attended the meeting included rabbis who had met with Pollard in prison last month and vowed to press for his freedom with top American officials.

The rabbis said they had found Pollard in frail health due to his long incarceration and the range of physical ailments from which he suffers. They reasserted more strongly than ever that his release was overdue, and said that hearing the painful narrative of his long years in prison renewed their determination to help secure his release.

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