Knesset Makes Strong Call For Pollard's Release (3 items)

Knesset Calls For Pollard's Release

December 9, 1997 - Liat Collins - The Jerusalem Post

The Knesset sent out a strong call yesterday for the release of Jonathan Pollard. The matter was raised by several Members of Knesset as a motion to the agenda, and united the house. Four Ministers - Natan Sharansky, Yuli Edelstein, Ariel Sharon and Moshe Katsav - were present, an unusually high turnout.

Edelstein, who recently visited Pollard in prison, said he hopes to see him here for the country's fiftieth anniversary celebrations. Pollard had called on Israel to act more on his behalf, saying that the U.S. will not release him if Israel is not more active in demanding it.

Deputy Defense Minister Silvan Shalom answering the motions said: "This government decided to act openly and publicly for Pollard's release. For years efforts were made more secretly but were not fruitful, unfortunately. Therefore the government has decided to be more open. I hope that soon Jonathan Pollard will be a visitor to the Knesset as an Israeli citizen."

He said the fact that Pollard had expressed remorse for his actions and served 12 years in prison, and the regional and international changes that have taken place were justification for a pardon.

Pollard Awareness in The Knesset And Government

December 9, 1997 - Arutz 7

Deputy Defense Minister Silvan Shalom announced yesterday in the Knesset that the government was changing its policy regarding Jonathan Pollard, and that it would now act openly to obtain his release from his American prison cell.

Minister of Communications Limor Livnat is expected to visit Pollard next week, after Absorption Minister Edelstein was the first to do so last month.

Edelstein, together with M.K.s Gideon Ezra (Likud), Yehuda Harel (Third Way), and Ofer Pines (Labor), established a Knesset lobby to work more vigorously for Pollard's freedom.

Knesset Calls for Pollard to Be Pardoned

December 9, 1997 - IINS News Service - Israel

After serving 12 years in maximum-security facilities for spying for Israel, Jonathan Pollard has now succeeded in unifying the Knesset, which yesterday made a public appeal for his release.

Deputy Defense Minister Silvan Shalom said that too little was done on Pollard's behalf over the past 12 years, and behind the scenes efforts did not bear any fruit. Now, Silvan stated, the time was right to speak openly and call for U.S. authorities to issue a pardon to Pollard.

Minister of Absorption Yuli Edelshtein, who was the first minister to ever visit Pollard, stated he was hopeful that Pollard would join him in celebrating Israel's 50th anniversary.

Since Edelshtein visited Pollard recently in his North Carolina prison cell, it appears to have opened the doors to others to do the same.

Next week, Communications Minister Limor Livnat is planning to visit with Pollard during her trip to the U.S..