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The wife of Yigal Amir, the jailed assassin of prime minister Yizhak Rabin, gave birth on Sunday to a son in Jerusalem's Bikur Holim hospital.

The Israel Prisons Service last week denied Amir's request for leave from prison to attend the upcoming circumcision ceremony, which he made while his wife, Larisa Trimbobler, was in the final stages of pregnancy.

The IPS also said that it would not allow Amir to hold the ceremony within Rimonim prison, were he is currently incarcerated.

IPS sources say that Amir's request was denied because he is a security prisoner.

Amir had earlier battled for his right to marry and have children. He married Trimbobler by proxy after IPS, backed by Attorney General Menachem Mazuz, forbade the ceremony from being held in prison.

Trimbobler paid him a conjugal visit in November 2006 after Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin ruled this did not pose a security risk.

The boy, whose name won't be disclosed until the circumcision, was born at a time of growing sympathy for commuting Amir's sentence. Israeli extremists and Amir's family have launched a campaign to have him released from prison. Stickers, posters and 150,000 copies of a video featuring his mother, wife and supporters vowing to free him by next spring have been circulated.

The pro-Amir movement has support beyond the fringes of society. A recent newspaper poll indicated about a quarter of Israelis, including almost half of religiously observant Jews, think Amir should be pardoned in 2015 after serving 20 years.

Clemency is the prerogative of Israel's president. Incumbent President Shimon Peres, who was Rabin's foreign minister and was a few steps away when the leader was gunned down, has said Amir shouldn't be pardoned. Many other prominent Israelis also condemned the pro-Amir movement, and Rabin's daughter, former Deputy Defense Minister Dalia Rabin-Pelossof, said Amir should have been executed.

Israel marked the 12th anniversary of Rabin's slaying last week, marking the anniversary of the assassination according to the Hebrew calendar.