U.S. Says 'No' to Peres on Pollard
"Our position hasn't changed" regarding Jonathan Pollard, U.S. National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said in an email to Yahoo News reported Tuesday.
Asked whether the White House had received President Shimon Peres's written plea to President Barack Obama to grant Pollard clemency, Vietor said he was not sure "but the position is the same."
Peres sent an urgent personal request Monday to Obama asking for Pollard to be pardoned on humanitarian grounds.
Peres also met with Esther Pollard on Sunday. According to his office, Peres listened carefully as she outlined her husband's deteriorating condition and implored the President to use all his influence as quickly as possible to ensure that Pollard – who was rushed to a hospital last Friday – is not sent back to prison.
She said returning Pollard to prison would "be a death sentence."
Peres's office told Arutz Sheva that the president working hand in hand with the leaders of the Freedom for Pollard Committee to maximize efforts to secure his release.
The President's Office noted that Peres will next meet with Obama in June to formally request Pollard's release on behalf of the citizens of Israel. Peres also received a letter to that effect bearing the signatures of 80 Israeli lawmakers.
Peres also requested Pollard's release during his last meeting with Obama, following the AIPAC conference in early March.