Yigal Amir, an Orthodox Jew, shot Rabin after a peace rally on Nov. 4, 1995, to protest the prime minister's policy of trading West Bank land for peace with the Palestinians. He was sentenced to life in prison and has been held in isolation.
Over the past year, however, Amir has been permitted conjugal visits with his wife, Larissa Trimbobler, whom he married by proxy while in prison. On Sunday, she gave birth to a child who was in good health, said Shimon Malka, a spokesman for Bikur Holim hospital in Jerusalem, where the baby was delivered.
Israeli authorities have denied Amir's request to attend the boy's circumcision, a ceremony held eight days after a Jewish boy's birth if the baby is healthy. That would be Nov. 4.
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.
By Amy Teibel