Shalit: 'Thanks for saving me, now it's Pollard's turn'
A year and a half after release, Gilad Shalit posts Facebook status calling on Obama to release Israeli spy Pollard: 'Freedom is greatest gift and privilege'
Itamar Eichner - YNET - March 12, 2013
Gilad Shalit, who was held in Hamas captivity for 1,941 days, is joining the campaign for the release of Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard, who is currently serving his 28th year in an American prison.
Shalit, currently on a long trip in Australia, posted a personal status via the official Facebook page of the campaign calling for his release, in it he called on all those involved in the struggle for his freedom to join the efforts to secure that of Pollard's.
"I have signed a petition, and call on you to do the same. Freedom is a great gift and (also a) privilege," Shalit wrote.
"I thank those who worked for my release, and now I ask you to join the struggle to save Pollard."
Over 150,000 have signed the petition, which was posted online a month ago in anticipation of US President Barak Obama's Israel visit, scheduled for the end of next week.
"In anticipation of this important occasion, we would like to appeal to you...as simple citizens of the State of Israel, (who) sincerely hope that you will take this opportunity to respond positively to the many requests for Jonathan Pollard's release," the petition reads.
"We implore you as one who symbolizes the shared values of humanity, compassion and hope for a second chance, to commute Jonathan Pollard's sentence to time served without delay and allow him to live out his remaining days as a free man.
"It is our fervent hope and prayer that your upcoming trip to Israel will bring us the good news we have waited for and that this tragic and painful episode can finally be put to rest once and for all."
A year ago, Shalit signed another petition, together with a group of artists and public figures, also calling for Pollard's release. The petition was then handed to President Shimon Peres upon his visit to the US to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama.
Goel Beno contributed to this report.
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