Israeli backpacker jailed in Russia files for pardon

FILE – In this file photo taken on Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, Israeli Naama Issachar gestures during an appeal hearings in a courtroom in Moscow, Russia. Israeli Issachar jailed in Russia on drug charges has submitted a petition to be pardoned by President Vladimir Putin. State news agency Tass reported Sunday that Naama Issachar’s lawyer said the request was filed following a statement by Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov that she could not be pardoned without making a personal appeal.(AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko Jr., File)

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MOSCOW (AP) — An Israeli woman jailed in Russia on drug charges has submitted a petition to be pardoned by President Vladimir Putin.

State news agency Tass reported Sunday that Naama Issachar’s lawyer said the request was filed following a statement by Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov that she couldn’t be pardoned without making a personal appeal.

The 26-year-old backpacker was arrested in April at a Moscow airport, where she was transferring en route from India to Israel. Russian authorities said more than nine grams of hashish were found in her luggage. She was sentenced to 7 1/2 years in prison. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appealed to Putin to pardon Issachar.

While in Israel last week, Putin met Issachar’s mother and told her “everything will be alright.”

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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