A Kremlin spokesperson stated on Monday that Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold a discussion with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu during his visit to Israel this week about the possibility of a pardon for Naama Issachar, the Israeli backpacker sentenced to 7.5 years in Russian prison for a minor drug charge.
Putin will meet with Netanyahu on Thursday in Jerusalem. The Russian president is also attending the World Holocaust Forum and the unveiling of a monument for the victims of the Siege of Leningrad. He will also meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Beit Lechem and tour Christian sites during his trip to Israel.
Earlier on Thursday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and the head of the National Security Council Meir Ben-Shabbat met on Monday with Naama’s mother, Yaffa Issachar, and other family members to update them on the latest developments.
On Sunday night, Yaffa Issachar called for supporters to avoid any public protests while Putin is in Israel since she was advised that public pressure could negatively affect the chances of Putin granting a pardon to her daughter.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)