Jonathan Pollard reportedly to speak with Jewish leaders


(JTA) — Freed spy-for-Israel Jonathan Pollard reportedly will speak to Jewish leaders and has received a more Shabbat-friendly electronic monitoring bracelet.

Pollard will speak to members of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish American Organizations next week in New York, the Forward reported Wednesday, citing unnamed sources informed about the event, at a meeting that will also include U.S. Reps. Jerrold Nadler and Eliot Engel, both New York Democrats. The meeting will discuss, in part, efforts to ease Pollard’s parole conditions, in which the congressmen have been actively involved, the report said.

Notice of the meeting does not appear on the website of the Presidents Conference website, which reportedly informed member organizations of the event by phone rather than by the usual email. This may have been done to prevent news about the meeting from being leaked, an unnamed official told the Forward.

Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice president of the Presidents Conference, did not respond to the Forward’s request for comment on the meeting.

Pollard was released from federal prison in November after serving 30 years of a life sentence for spying for Israel.

The restrictive conditions for Pollard’s five-year parole include wearing an electronic ankle bracelet with GPS tracking and surveillance of his and any employer’s computers. He also is confined to his New York home between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. — a condition, Pollard’s attorneys have argued in requesting an easing of the restrictions, that has interfered with his ability to observe the Jewish Sabbath and certain holidays, and could preclude him from holding a job.

Pollard’s lawyers have asked the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of New York to ease his parole conditions. The probation officers agreed to extend Pollard’s curfew hours and offered him a GPS bracelet that does not require frequent charging.

In a hearing last month, Judge Katherine Forrest of the U.S. District Court in Manhattan sent the Pollard case back to the U.S. Parole Commission for further review.

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