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Putin grants pardon to Israeli woman jailed in Russia on drug trafficking charges


ANI Asia
Russian President Vladimir Putin has granted pardon to Naama Issachar, an American-Israeli woman, jailed in Russia on drug trafficking charges, the Kremlin said in a statement.
According to the statement, the presidential decree pardoning Issachar on "humanitarian principles" is effective immediately, CNN reported.
The release comes ahead of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's visit to Moscow. Netanyahu will fly to Russia directly after completing his White House visit. He has released a statement thanking Putin for granting pardon to Issachar.
"I thank my friend, President Putin, on his granting of pardon to Naama Issachar," he said. "I expect we will meet tomorrow and will discuss the deal of the century and the recent regional developments," the statement read.
It now appears certain that Issachar will fly back to Israel with Netanyahu, who announced his trip to Moscow only yesterday.
Issachar has been in prison in Moscow since April when she was stopped at the airport for having 9.5 grams of marijuana in her checked luggage.
She was subsequently convicted of drug smuggling and sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in prison.
Since her arrest, Netanyahu has repeatedly pleaded Issachar's case with Putin, asking the Russian President to pardon her and allow her to return to Israel.

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First Published: Jan 30 2020 | 3:28 AM IST

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