On Thursday, a parole board is expected to determine whether or not to allow the former Prime Minister an early release.

Photo credit: Avi Dishi, Flash 90/Channel 2 News

Israeli government officials on Friday called for an early prison release for former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert ahead of next week’s parole decision.

“It’s time to release Ehud Olmert,” tweeted Education Minister MK Naftali Bennett. “Despite our disagreements, there’s no denying his crucial contribution to Israel’s security in a series of bold decisions.”

Transport Minister Yisrael Katz also expressed his support for Olmert, calling on the parole board to show leniency. “Olmert has served two thirds of his sentence. It’s time to send him home,” he said.

A picture of Olmert, showing him looking thin and weak after a hospitalization earlier this week, was recently published on social media. According to reports on Channel 2 News, the former Prime Minister has lost six kilograms (13 lbs.) since going into jail.