Greeted by Netanyahu, Jonathan Pollard kisses tarmac as he lands in Israel
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Greeted by Netanyahu, Jonathan Pollard kisses tarmac as he lands in Israel

Former intelligence analyst who served 30 years in jail for giving classified information to Israel is allowed to move to the Jewish state

Jonathan Pollard, an American former intelligence analyst who served more than 30 years in jail for giving information to Israel, has completed his move to the Jewish state.

Upon landing in Israel on Wednesday morning, Pollard and his wife Esther prostrated themselves on the tarmac before being greeted by prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

This comes after the U.S. Parole Commission lifted restrictions on him last month, five years after he was paroled from federal prison, and 35 years since his arrest in November 1985.

The 66-year-old pleaded guilty in 1986 to conspiracy to commit espionage in connection with providing Israeli contacts with hundreds of classified documents he had obtained as a civilian intelligence specialist for the U.S. Navy.  He was released from a federal prison last November after serving 30 years of a life sentence.

Pollard was met by Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu who “welcomed Jonathan and Esther Pollard upon their arrival in Israel, early this morning. The Prime Minister was moved to meet them on the tarmac next to the plane where they recited the Shehecheyanu blessing together.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu gave Jonathan Pollard an Israeli identity card. The Prime Minister told the Pollards that it is good that they have come home where they will be able to start a new life, in freedom and happiness.”

Jonathan Pollard said: “We are ecstatic to be home at last after 35 years and we thank the people and the Prime Minister of Israel for bringing us home. No one could be prouder of this country or this leader than we are.

“We hope to become productive citizens as soon and as quickly as possible and to get on with our lives here. This is a wonderful country. It has a tremendous future. It is the future of the Jewish people and we’re not going anywhere.”

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