Pollard says U.S. jailers tortured him, asks to be Prisoner of Zion (HA´ARETZ NEWS) By Yuval Yoaz, Haaretz Correspondent 05/08/05 17:45)
HA'ARETZ} NEWS SERVICE
HA'ARETZ} NEWS SERVICE Articles-Index-Top
In an appeal to the Supreme Court, Jonathan Pollard, serving a life
sentence for spying for Israel, demanded Sunday that Israel recognize
him as a Prisoner of Zion, stating that his U.S. jailers cruelly
tortured him with electric shocks and blasts of freezing cold water.
"We are asking the Supreme Court to review the Israeli government´s
betrayal of Pollard," said his attorney, Nitzana Darshan-Leitner
"The government´s refusal to grant Pollard the status of a Prisoner
of Zion is yet another symptom of its fear of the Americans, and it
permits it to ignore the torture and abuse that our agent suffered in
Pollard was arrested in 1985 in the United States and in March 1987
was convicted of espionage for Israel and transmitting classified
information to a foreign country, and was sentenced to an unspecified
In 1996, after a long legal struggle, Pollard was granted Israeli
citizenship and in 1998, following a second petition, he was
recognized by Israel as an agent who worked on behalf of Israel´s
"Since the start of his sentence Jonathan Pollard has been subjected
to long periods of cruel torture," Pollard stated in his appeal
against the Authority for Prisoners of Zion in the Ministry of
Pollard, who is serving a life sentence in the United States for
spying for Israel, was "held in the Louisburg prison naked in
solitary confinement in freezing temperatures for many weeks.
"His clothes and glasses were taken from him. He didn´t receive a bed
or blankets, but only a cement slab to sleep on," the appeal stated.
Granting Prisoner of Zion status would promise Pollard and his family
certain rights, including compensation, and would bind the government
to certain legal obligations.
In June 2004 the government rejected Pollard´s request to receive the
status of a Prisoner of Zion status. Last December the appeal against
the government decision was again rejected. At time, the government
argued that the "U.S. was not an enemy state, but Israel´s greatest
Pollard´s appeal shed light on acts of torture to which he stated he
had been subjected.
"Pollard was put in a special cell and seated in a steel chair that
was fixed to the floor. His hands and feet were shackled to the
chair, and then freezing cold fierce jets of water were trained on
him for almost an hour."
In a different prison in Springfield, Pollared said, he received
electric shocks, not as a means of punishment, but as "a sign of
warning" to make him obey wardens´ orders.
The petition, submitted by attorney Darshan-Leitner, claimed that
according to the legal definition, even the former Soviet Union could
not have been considered an "enemy state," but Israel still granted
Jews imprisoned there the status of Prisoners of Zion. (© Copyright
2005 Haaretz. 05/08/05)
Return to Top
MATERIAL REPRODUCED FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY