July 03, 2007

Vanunu back in Israeli jail

Just got this report from the Canadian Globe and Mail.
Nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu was ordered by an Israeli court on Monday to return to jail for six months for violating an order restricting his contact with foreigners.

Mr. Vanunu, a former technician at Israel's nuclear plant near the southern town of Dimona, spent 18 years in prison for giving details of the country's atomic program to a British newspaper in 1986.

Upon his release in 2004, Mr. Vanunu was prohibed from leaving the country and from talking to foreigners without approval, because Israeli authorities said he could still divulge classified information.

A Jerusalem regional court found in April that Mr. Vanunu had violated 14 counts of those restrictions by holding unauthorized contacts with foreigners through the Internet and by entering the West Bank. On Monday, the court sentenced him to six months in jail and a further six months suspended sentence.

Following the conviction, Mr. Vanunu said the ruling proved “that Israel is not a democracy.”

He pleaded to be allowed to leave the country and “be free.”

Mr. Vanunu has 45 days to appeal the ruling, the court said.

The details divulged by Mr. Vanunu in 1986 and published in London's Sunday Times led experts to conclude that Israel has the world's sixth-largest stockpile of nuclear weapons, including hundreds of warheads.

Israel neither acknowledges nor denies having a nuclear weapons program.
Well that's alright then.

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