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Israel: brother of Yitzhak Rabin's killer freed and remains unrepentant

Haggai Amir, the brother of Yitzhak Rabin's killer who served 16.5 years in jail for his involvement in the murder of the Israeli prime minister, has been freed and remains unrepentant.

israel Yitzhak Rabin 2012 5 3Enlarge
Haggai Amir, the brother and key accomplice of the man who assassinated Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin, gets into a car after leaving Ayalon prison in Ramla near Tel Aviv on May 4, 2012. (Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images)

Haggai Amir, the brother of Yitzhak Rabin's killer who served 16.5 years in jail for his involvement in the murder of the Israeli prime minister, has been freed and remains unrepentant. 

Yigal Amir, an ultra-nationalist Jewish extremist, is serving a life sentence for gunning down Rabin in 1995 after a Tel Aviv peace rally.

The brothers opposed Rabin's policy of trading parts of what they believed were Biblical lands to the Palestinians for peace, the Associated Press wrote.

The killing of Rabin, a war hero who Israelis trusted to negotiate peace, cast a shadow on hopes for the peace process.

Rabin had signed the Oslo accords and a peace treaty with Jordan, and was open to the idea of conceding lands Israel captured in the 1967 Mideast war.

After exiting the prison gate, Haggai Amir, 43 — who helped plan the killing — gestured a 'V' sign with his hand, hugged family members and told reporters waiting outside the jail: "I am proud of what I did," the Israeli news website YNet News reported.

According to Agence France-Presse, dozens of peace activists outside the prison holding signs chanting, "we won't forget or forgive."

As Amir exited Ayalon prison in Ramla, south of Tel Aviv, they chanted "disgrace."

He was greeted by his mother and whisked away in a white van, reportedly to a relative's house in a Jewish West Bank settlement.

Amir was originally received a 16-year sentence but had it lengthened by six months by threatening the life of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in 2006, the AP wrote.

Rabin's daughter Dalia, meantime, told Ynet News on Thursday that Haggai should never go free.

"People like that belong behind bars forever," she said.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/israel-and-palestine/120504/israel-yitzak-rabin-haggai-amir-yigal-Jewish-extremist