The Israeli ambassador to Washington Danny Ayalon has paid a visit to Jonathan Pollard, the US Navy analyst who is serving a life term for spying for Israel. It was the first time the prime minister has sent an envoy to Pollard, since he was jailed 20 years ago in a scandal that strained US-Israel relations. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said this week that Israel is stepping up efforts to get Pollard out of jail. Repeated Israeli requests for his release have been rebuffed by US presidents, even though Russian spies jailed for far more serious crimes have been freed. Pollard and his family have accused the Israeli government of failing to work for his release, which would allow him to immigrate to Israel. His wife Esther said the Ayalon visit did not change anything. "The meeting was empty of content...disgusting and disappointing," Esther told Israel Radio.
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