Members of the Bnei Akiva youth movement are introducing a new initiative in support of imprisoned spy Jonathan Pollard who has been incarcerated in a US prison for 26 years.
A group of teens in Yerushalayim will spend 10 days in a facility constructed to simulate a US prison. The project comes a week after a group of celebrities joined together in a project to simulate Gilad Shalit’s prison conditions, each being “jailed” for one hour.
Only this project does not involve celebrities; 100 Bnei Akiva members will be taking part in the project meant to demonstrate Pollard’s harsh confinement conditions.
The teens, members of the Jerusalem branch of the Bnei Akiva movement, are constructing a structure in the style of a US prison on the grounds of the movement branch. On Monday they will dress as inmates and eat prison rations. The role of prison guards will be filled by their counselors.
The daily prison routine will be broken once every day when the “inmates” protest in front of the US consulate demanding the immediate release of Pollard and collecting signatures from passersby for a petition.
During the protests, the Bnei Akiva members will be joined by members of the Meretz youth group. “We are committing ourselves to this important struggle to release Pollard,” Meretz youth group spokesman Yarin Shechter said. “This is a person who worked at Israel’s behest; there is a clear case of human rights violations.”
Bnei Akiva Secretary General Rabbi Benny Nechtailer added: “We feel the injustice experienced by Pollard has recently sharpened.”