It is expected to travel by Jonathan Pollard, a US citizen jailed for 30 years after being convicted of spying in one of the most dramatic cases of espionage in the Cold War, to Israel After parole.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin NetanyahuWelcoming the lifting of travel restrictions, his office said in a statement on Saturday, adding that it had “worked continuously to secure Pollard’s release.”
“The prime minister hopes to see Jonathan Pollard in Israel soon, and he offers with all Israelis his best wishes for him and his wife Esther,” the statement said.
On Friday, the US Department of Justice announced that Pollard would not be renewed on parole, and that the former spy was freed from the strict restrictions that kept him in the country. Since he left prison five years ago.
As Pollard’s attorney, Elliot Lauer, suggested that his client will soon leave for Israel: “We are grateful and happy that our client has finally been freed from any restrictions, and he is now a free man in all respects. We look forward to seeing our clients in Israel.”
After being arrested by FBI agents in 1985 after he had unsuccessfully sought asylum at the Israeli embassy in Washington, Pollard was sentenced to life in prison in 1987. He had pleaded guilty to handing thousands of classified documents to Israel.
The initial shock between the United States and its close ally, and the continuing imprisonment of Pollard, led to long-strained relations between the two countries.
Pollard was released The latest series of gestures By the late Trump administration toward the Netanyahu government.
This week, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo became the first high-ranking US diplomat An official visit to an Israeli settlement in the West Bank. It was later announced that products from settlements – which are illegal under international law – could be classified as “Made in Israel”, even though they are made in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
Netanyahu has always pushed for Pollard’s release. During the leader’s long term first term in the late 1990s, Pollard was granted Israeli citizenship. Netanyahu later made a personal appeal to be allowed to attend his father’s funeral. The United States refused this request. Repeated attempts to persuade American presidents to grant him amnesty failed.
In his Saturday statement, Netanyahu thanked his ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, for “leading the communications responsibly and sensitively with [Trump] Management”.