amir - Tomer Neuberg - May 14 2010
Yigal Amir, convicted murder of former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, in a Nazareth courtroom, February 4, 2010. Photo by Tomer Neuberg
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Yigal Amir is to remain in solitary confinement after the Supreme Court yesterday refused to hear his appeal of an April ruling by the Petah Tikva District Court.

Amir was sentenced to a life term plus 14 years for the murder in November 1995 of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and related offenses. He has been in solitary confinement the entire time.

Amir has refused offers by the Israel Prison Service for him to be placed in a cell with one other inmate, saying this would be even more difficult for him than solitary confinement. He has, however, agreed to an hour's Torah study every two weeks with another inmate.

In April Amir appealed to the Supreme Court against the lower court's decision to extend his solitary confinement by an additional six more months. He claimed it constituted discrimination, as other dangerous inmates - including Palestinian security prisoners - were not placed in solitary confinement.

The prison authorities have maintained that placing Amir in the general prison population could expose him to revenge attacks from other prisoners. Amir also posed a danger to state security because he could spread his ideas among other prisoners, the service said.

Amir rejected as groundless concerns that removing him from isolation could constitute a public danger by enabling him to spread prohibited ideas. He said he was allowed to speak on the telephone and could make his voice heard.