Murderer of Israeli Peace Activist Emil Grunzweig to Be Released From Jail

Yona Avrushmi was convicted of throwing a hand grenade into a group of peace demonstrators in 1983, killing Grunzweig and leaving nine others wounded.

The convicted murderer of an Israeli peace activist will be released from jail on Wednesday, 27 years into his life sentence.

Yona Avrushmi was convicted in 1983 for throwing a hand grenade into a group of peace demonstrators outside the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem.

Yona Avrushmi
Lior Mizrahi

The explosion killed Peace Now activist Emil Grunzweig and wounded nine others, in an incident that furthered tensions between the Right and Left in Israel.

Avrushmi began serving his sentence in February 1984. In February 1995, then-President Ezer Weizman commuted his sentence to a total of 27 years.

In August 2001, a special parole board headed by Supreme Court Justice Edmond Levy decided to grant Avrushmi early release. The board stipulated the parole on the condition that Avrushmi participate in a rehabilitation program and remain under the constant supervision of a social worker.

In 2002 the state prosecution appealed the decision, which was then rejected by the court on the grounds that Avrushmi no longer poses a danger to the public.

The Prisons Service noted that Avrushmi had in recent months been living in a minimum-security hostel and had been granted long furloughs. During this entire period, the prisons report noted, Avrushmi met all the conditions set for him by the authorities.

During his first years in prison Avrushmi was often in direct conflict with presiding authorities, and even stabbed and wounded two prison guards during that time.

Avrushmi is expected to move to a rented apartment in Tel Aviv upon his release from the Hadarim Prison.