Wife of Jonathan Pollard in Israel for High Court Hearing

Esther Pollard in Jerusalem to confront Israeli State Attorney over torture and abuse of husband in US jails

Shurat HaDin Law Center - Sunday, September 4, 2005

For Immediate Release

JERUSALEM - Esther Pollard, wife of imprisoned Israeli intelligence agent, Jonathan Pollard, has arrived in Jerusalem in anticipation of a hearing for her husband in Israel's Supreme Court of Justice to be heard on Monday, September 5, 2005 at 11am.

Pollard, who is in his 20th year of a life sentence in the U.S. for his activities on behalf of Israel, filed a petition in May of this year in the High Court of Justice in Jerusalem to compel the government of Israel to officially declare him a "Prisoner of Zion." (PoZ). This status bestows important rights upon the PoZ and imposes specific legal obligations upon the government.

The petition asks the Court, in making its determination, to investigate the United States' violation of Pollard's plea agreement, his unprecedented life-sentence, and the cruel and unusual punishment to which he has been subjected. Pollard's petition to the High Court of Justice reveals, for the first time, detailed episodes of abuse and affliction that the Israeli agent has been subjected to over the last 2 decades in American prisons.

Pollard is represented in the High Court by Israeli attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner. Attorney Larry Dub is 'of counsel'.

Pollard, a former civilian analyst for the US Navy, was arrested in Washington, D.C., on November 21, 1985, on charges of having passed classified information to Israel. He is the only person in the history of the United States to receive a life sentence for spying for an ally.

In its response on behalf of the government, the State Attorney has argued that Pollard should be denied the designation because he does not satisfy the criteria for being declared a PoZ. The State Attorney argues that intelligence activities do not qualify as a "Zionist activity." Pollard's attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner strongly disagrees. Darshan-Leitner states, " We will demonstrate in court that Jonathan Pollard is a bona fide Israeli agent, who meets or exceeds all of the legal requirements to be officially recognized as a prisoner of Zion. The Prisoners of Zion themselves have formally recognized Pollard as a PoZ long ago; how dare the Government challenge their judgment?!"

Former PoZ Yosef Mendelevitch states, "If Pollard is not a PoZ, neither are the rest of us!"

According to Pollard's wife, Esther: "Jonathan has been forced to fight every inch of the way trying to get home. First Jonathan had to fight for his Israeli citizenship. He won it. Then Jonathan had to fight for his service as an Israeli agent to be officially recognized. He won that too. Now he is being forced to fight for his PoZ status. With G-d's help he will win this round as well. All of the petitions Jonathan has filed in Israel's Supreme Court have been for the sole purpose of forcing Israel to live up to its obligations to him -- first and foremost to secure his immediate release from the US!"

For more information: 0523-837020