On Sunday 8 August Mordechai Vanunu was released from jail after serving three months in prison for violating the terms of his 2004 release by talking to foreigners. He comment; ‘All this harassing me and arresting me again is Israeli’s problem, not my problem’. Now Mairead Maguire, Nobel Peace Laureate, and Gerry Grehan, Chair, Peace People Northern Ireland, have written to President Obama, other world leaders and prominent personalities, to ask for their help in the lifting of all restrictions and for Vanunu to be allowed to leave Israel.
In their letter to President Obama they reveal details about Vanunu’s further punishment in an Israeli Prison.
‘On Sunday 11th July, 2010, his brother Meir was granted a 30 minute visit. There was a glass between them and they spoke via the phone. He is in a cell by himself for 24 hours a day, no window except for a small wire covered crack at the top of one wall. He has about an hour’s walk a day in a very tiny yard. He was simply thrown in a cell by the security agents, the door locked, and left to suffer there all alone.’
Vanunu will still have to remain in Israel and the restrictions will be reviewed and probably renewed yet again, as they have been renewed each year for the past 6 years. One thing is clear he has been punished and served his full sentence and it is time after 24 years to do the human thing and let him live as a free man.
The Israeli Supreme Court continues to accept the Secret Services’ claims that Vanunu still had secrets, but a report by Reuters on 20th December, 2009, quotes Uzi Eilam, a retired Army Brigadier-General who ran the Israeli Atomic Energy Commission between l976 and l986 said anything Vanunu might still disclose about Dimona is of little relevance. ‘I’ve always believed he should be let go’ said Eilam. ‘I don’t think he has significant things to reveal (about Dimona) now.’
Maguire and Grehan in their letter express their hope ‘that you will in some way facilitate his early release which would be welcomed by a world waiting and watching for a peaceful and secure future for Israel and its people.’
You can help by signing the Online petition for Vanunu: http://humanrights.change.org/petitions/view/release_mordechai_vanunu