US release Jonathan Pollard after 30 years in jail

Convicted for spying for Israel. Netanyahu, great day

20 November, 14:24

    Jonathan Pollard's wife poses close to a poster for the release  of her husband (archive photo) Jonathan Pollard's wife poses close to a poster for the release of her husband (archive photo)

    TEL AVIV - Jonathan Pollard, an American citizen convicted in the US for spying for Israel, was released today from a prison in North Carolina after a 30-year-long detention, according to Israeli media. Pollard, 61, will have to respect a number of restrictions including a ban on leaving the United States.

    ''The people of Israel welcome the release of Jonathan Pollard'', commented Israeli Premier Benyamin Netanyahu. ''I have raised Pollard's case for years with various US presidents and have long hoped that this day would finally come''. ''May this Shabbat bring him joy and peace'', added Netanyahu.

    Pollard was arrested on November 21, 1985, after a probe over the possibility that he spied for the Jewish state while he worked as an analyst for the intelligence services of the US navy. Two years later, he was sentenced to life in prison on the same charge. Given that the crime was committed before November 1, 1987, Pollard was released on parole after spending 30 years in prison.
    Pollard's case was long at the center of a strong arm between the United States and Israel, which repeatedly asked for his release, while various presidents subsequently elected at the White House, along with the CIA and FBI always expressed their opposition.
    An American Jew, Pollard declared he was guilty at the trial, testifying that he had revealed classified information because of his devotion to Israel. Some sources claim that over that period he was paid about 50,000 dollars for the information by the Jewish state. Israel granted him citizenship while he was in jail.

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