Russia postpones hearing for jailed Israeli Naama Issachar

Issachar’s mother is in Moscow to attend the hearing that may very well determine the fate of her daughter.

By World Israel News Staff

The appeal hearing for Naama Issachar, the Israeli woman imprisoned in Russia for drug possession, has been postponed by a week.

Russian authorities originally scheduled the appeal for Dec. 12 but postponed it due to a request by Issachar to be physically present at the hearing rather than participate via a video feed.

Issachar’s mother is in Moscow to attend the hearing that may very well determine the fate of her daughter.

Despite Russian media reports that claim otherwise, Issachar’s family says that she is in a terrible emotional state at the Russian prison where she is being held.

In an interview with JTA in November, Issachar’s sister, Liad Goldberg, recalled the visit she had with her sibling.

“Physically, she’s safe and everything, but I personally truly worry for her emotional and mental well-being,” Goldberg said. “My mom saw her a couple of days ago and she’s losing it. She can’t really take it anymore.”

In April, Issachar was heading back to Tel Aviv after a three-month vacation in India. She was arrested before her connecting flight in Moscow for possession of drugs after Russian authorities discovered 9.5 grams of marijuana in her luggage.

Despite her denial, Issachar was taken from the airport to a detention center in Moscow. She was then charged with drug possession, which often entails one month of detention, a fine and a ban on entering the country. However, shortly afterward, the public prosecutor changed the charge from drug possession to drug smuggling.

On October 11, Issachar was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has asked Russian President Vladimir Putin multiple times to grant Issachar a pardon but to no avail.

However, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Nov. 14  that Putin will consider Netanyahu’s request.

“We know that Netanyahu’s request was received. Once it gets through the diplomatic channels, it will be considered by the Russian president,” Peskov said.