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Israeli police arrest nuclear whistleblower

Mordechai Vanunu, the man responsible for letting the world know about the Israeli nuclear program, has faced the court in Jerusalem.

Nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu has been ordered to be put under house arrest after being charged with violating a condition of his 2004 release from an Israeli prison.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said Tuesday that Vanunu met with “a number of foreigners,'' something he was ordered not to do, for fear he might divulge classified information.

His lawyer, Avigdor Feldman, said Vanunu was arrested because he has a Norwegian girlfriend whom police have already interrogated.

Mordechai Vanunu is a former Israeli nuclear technical assistant who revealed details of Israel's nuclear weapons program to the British press in 1986. He was later kidnapped in Italy by Israeli intelligence, transported to Israel and ultimately convicted of treason and espionage.

Vanunu spent 18 years in prison and was released in 2004. Since then he has been arrested several times for violations of restrictions on his speech and movement, including giving various interviews to foreign journalists and attempting to leave Israel.

In 2007, Vanunu was sentenced to six months in prison for violating the terms of his parole.