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In Defense of Julian Assange

Many people and organizations worldwide have expressed their support of Assange and his work with WikiLeaks (see also Assange's awards and recognition). Many expressed their concerns about how his rights were abused during the time of his political asylum inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London, and about his welfare now that he is imprisoned at Belmarsh high-security prison. As years of political persecution take on a new extreme and decisive turn with the upcoming fight against an extradition to the US, knowledge of the “Assange & WikiLeaks VS the USA & their crimes” case grows and so does public outrage. Voices are rallying with yet more urgency now that Assange's life is at stake, with the understanding that the threat to Assange and WikiLeaks is a threat to us all.

Parliamentary assembly Resolution 2317: Threats to media freedom and journalists’ security in Europe, 28/01/2020

States must

  • 6.2 “recognise, and ensure respect of, the right of journalists to protect their sources, and develop an appropriate normative, judicial and institutional framework to protect whistleblowers and whistleblowing facilitators, in line with Assembly Resolution 2300 (2019) “Improving the protection of whistleblowers all over Europe”; in this respect, consider that the detention and criminal prosecution of Mr Julian Assange sets a dangerous precedent for journalists, and join the recommendation of the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment who declared, on 1 November 2019, that Mr Assange’s extradition to the United States must be barred and that he must be promptly released;”

http://assembly.coe.int/nw/xml/XRef/Xref-XML2HTML-en.asp?fileid=28508&lang=en

23/02/2020 OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Harlem Désir, expressed his concern at the potential extradition of WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange, ahead of his hearing on 24 February.

“I call on the UK authorities not to extradite Julian Assange when the hearing takes place on Monday. I am particularly concerned by the numerous charges he faces and the disproportionate prison sentence, up to a total of 175 years, that he could potentially face if extradited and convicted,” said Désir.“The public interest of several of the publications by WikiLeaks in 2010 should be taken into account, as it contributed to important investigative reports and news reporting. It is essential to consider the impact on freedom of expression and media freedom if he is extradited and convicted. This could have a chilling effect on journalism and press freedom.”

https://www.osce.org/representative-on-freedom-of-media/446923

a List of Press freedom and human rights groups that condemn Assange's arrest

Sweden should issue assurance it won't extradite Assange (2012)

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2012/09/sweden-should-issue-assurance-it-won-t-extradite-assange-usa/

Julian Assange must not be extradited - 11 April 2019

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/04/julian-assange-must-not-be-extradited-to-the-usa/

In October 2019 Amnesty International Australia has issued a statement on the matter, saying that “the UK must abide by its obligations under international human rights law that forbids the transfer of individuals to another country where they would face serious human rights violations.”

https://www.amnesty.org.au/extradition-of-julian-assange-to-the-united-states-must-not-go-ahead/?fbclid=IwAR0EIRjlwiPThQBBMXJpbj84pyBgir0arYfmCcF356fh_yZKmkEeGxAHf44

“The British authorities must acknowledge the real risks of serious human rights violations Julian Assange would face if sent to the USA, and reject the extradition request.” - Massimo Moratti, Amnesty International’s Europe Deputy Director

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/press-releases/uk-extradition-julian-assange-usa-must-not-go-ahead

UK: Assange bail application highligths COVID-19 risks to many vulnerable detainees and prisoners (25/03/2020)

https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2020/03/uk-assange-bail-application-highlights-covid19-risk-to-many-vulnerable-detainees-and-prisoners/

“The Assange prosecution threatens modern journalism.” - Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch

https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/04/12/assange-prosecution-threatens-modern-journalism

“For the first time in the history of our country, the government has brought criminal charges against a publisher for the publication of truthful information. This is an extraordinary escalation of the Trump administration's attacks on journalism, and a direct assault on the First Amendment.” - Ben Wizner, director

https://www.aclu.org/press-releases/aclu-comment-julian-assange-indictment

In this appeal to all fellow professionals in every branch of the press and media, journalists worldwide speak out in support of Julian Assange in the name of fundamental human rights and the public's right to know.

“Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is alarmed by reports that Wikileaks founder Julian Assange’s health has deteriorated in detention, and calls for his immediate release on humanitarian grounds. RSF condemns the continued targeting of Assange for his journalistic like activities, which sets a dangerous precedent”.

https://rsf.org/en/news/two-months-assanges-extradition-hearing-rsf-calls-his-release-humanitarian-grounds-and-us-espionage

The European Federation of Journalists stated that the arbitrary detention of Julian Assange sets a dangerous precedent for journalists, media actors and freedom of the press. Together with the International Federation Of Journalists they expressed their concerns: “This case stands at the heart of the principle of free speech. If the US government can prosecute Mr Assange for publishing classified documents, it may clear the way for governments to prosecute journalists anywhere, an alarming precedent for freedom of the press worldwide. Also, the use of espionage charges against people publishing materials provided by whistleblowers is a first and should alarm every journalist and publisher. In a democracy, journalists can reveal war crimes and cases of torture and abuse without having to go to jail. It is the very role of the press in a democracy. If governments can use espionage laws against journalists and publishers, they are deprived of their most important and traditional defense – of acting in the public interest – which does not apply under the Espionage Act.”

https://europeanjournalists.org/blog/2020/01/02/international-journalist-statement-in-defence-of-julian-assange/?fbclid=IwAR2Qy2pUFEEu-wXjxzuAFEb7GYedM6hPa9YNC62rKa842pxLU279wjV4ogo

The International Federation of Journalists pledged its ongoing support to the campaign to prevent the extradition of Julian Assange at a meeting at the European Parliament in Brussels.

https://www.ifj.org/media-centre/news/detail/category/future-of-journalism/article/brussels-journalism-is-not-a-crime-julian-assange-must-be-released.html?fbclid=IwAR08yECV377J0GCcjMRUJkugSq7fqe2lOYBMwmoyOy77mS1RwvNLipEj8ts

The Centre For Investigative Journalism stated that “whatever your view of its philosophy of radical transparency, Wikileaks is a publisher. Any charges now brought in connection with that material, or any attempt to extradite Mr Assange to the United States for prosecution under the deeply flawed cudgel of the Espionage Act 1917, is an attack on all of us. Mr Assange deserves the solidarity of the community of investigative journalists. The world is now watching.”

https://tcij.org/news/a-statement-from-the-cij-on-julian-assanges-arrest/

IBAHRI (International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute) condemns UK treatment of Julian Assange in US extradition trial 10/03/2020

The International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) condemns the reported mistreatment of Julian Assange during his United States extradition trial in February 2020, and urges the government of the United Kingdom to take action to protect him.

https://www.ibanet.org/Article/NewDetail.aspx?ArticleUid=c05c57ee-1fee-47dc-99f9-26824208a750

“Images of Ecuador's ambassador inviting the UK's secret police into the embassy to drag a publisher of--like it or not-- award-winning journalism out of the building are going to end up in the history books. Assange's critics may cheer, but this is a dark moment for press freedom”

https://nypost.com/2019/04/11/edward-snowden-calls-assanges-arrest-a-dark-moment-for-journalism/

On Assange's arrest and indictment:

https://defend.wikileaks.org/2019/04/23/edward-snowden-on-julian-assanges-arrest-and-indictment/

“US war on Julian Assange is one more step towards authoritarianism”

https://sputniknews.com/us/201912061077502535-edward-snowden-us-war-on-julian-assange-one-more-step-towards-authoritarianism-/

Angela Richter reads Edward Snowden's letter at We are all Assange event in Berlin 29/04/2019

https://diem25.org/we-are-all-julian-assange/

Exiled NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden condemns persecution of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/12/09/snow-d09.html

“Trump has created a global playbook to attack those revealing uncomfortable truths”, 26/01/2020

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/01/26/edward-snowden-trump-has-created-global-playbook-attack-those-revealing-uncomfortable-truths/

“WikiLeaks embarrassed the US government by shedding light on powerful people who do horrific things with public money and as a result, Julian has been put on the sacrificial altar.”

“Someone who speaks truth to power in the public interest and allows us to understand how the world works should not find themselves facing prison”

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/04/lauri-love-julian-assange-put-sacrificial-alter-190414110242061.html

Assange's arrest is the beginning of the end

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/daniel-ellsberg-assanges-arrest-is-the-beginning-of-the-end/

Espionage charges against Assange are the most significant attack on the press since the Pentagon Papers

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJuCNrRXxC4&feature=youtu.be

https://www.orbooks.com/catalog/in-defense-of-julian-assange/

It is critical now to build support for Assange and prevent his delivery into the hands of the Trump administration. That is the urgent purpose of this book. A wide range of distinguished contributors, many of them in original pieces, here set out the story of Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, the importance of their work, and the dangers for us all in the persecution they face.

Contributors: Pamela Anderson, Julian Assange, Renata Avila, Katrin Axelsson, Franco “Bifo” Berardi, Sally Burch, Noam Chomsky, Patrick Cockburn, Naomi Colvin, The Courage Foundation, Mark Curtis, Daniel Ellsberg, Teresa Forcades i Vila, Charles Glass, Kevin Gosztola, Serge Halimi, Nozomi Hayase, Chris Hedges, Srećko Horvat, Caitlin Johnstone, Margaret Kimberley, Geoffroy de Lagasnerie, Lisa Longstaff, Alan MacLeod, Stefania Maurizi, Craig Murray, Fidel Narváez, John C. O’Day, John Pilger, Jesselyn Radack, Michael Ratner, Angela Richter, Geoffrey Robertson, Jennifer Robinson, Matt Taibbi, Natalia Viana, Ai Weiwei, Vivienne Westwood and Slavoj Žižek.

5e2ddfacf20d5a719a6b4edb.jpg Liberté pour Assange, journaliste, prisonnier politique

“Nous en appelons au gouvernement belge : Julian Assange est un prisonnier politique dont la santé se dégrade de jour en jour. Il est plus que temps que la Belgique se mobilise. Il en va de nos droits fondamentaux. …”

full text: https://www.lalibre.be/debats/opinions/liberte-pour-assange-journaliste-prisonnier-politique-5e2ddfadf20d5a719a6b4edd

Signatories: signaturesfinalassange_be.pdf

Dr. West lauds Julian Assange as a revolutionary truth-teller: “It's very clear that brother Julian is a person of very deep moral conviction, politcal commitment - that he was fundamentally commited to disclosing these truths, revealing these truths across the board… There needs to be much wider and intense support for him”

Exclusive Interviews by Randy Credico with Cornel West, Max Blumenthal and Ben Wizner on Assange Countdown to Freedom:

https://covertactionmagazine.com/index.php/2020/02/07/exclusive-interviews-with-cornel-west-max-blumenthal-and-ben-wizner-on-assange-countdown-to-freedom/

“Assange helped teach the people about our tarnished freedom – now we are all he has left to defend him”

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/julian-assange-extradition-us-wikileaks-google-slavoj-zizek-a8866741.html

“Free Julian Assange — his fate is inextricably tied to our own We are dealing with the basic meaning of our freedom and human rights”

https://spectator.us/free-julian-assange-fate-inextricably-tied/

“Assange extradition should be warning to liberals who believe in American democracy”

https://www.rt.com/uk/461862-zizek-assange-extradition-brutality/

“This is the first time in history that a non-US publisher has been charged under the Espionage Act of 1917. All he published was the truth.

So this extradition is not just an ordinary legal case. It is a test case, and if we lose it will set the precedent that no journalist is safe anywhere in the world”

https://www.pamelaandersonfoundation.org/news/2019/9/14/assange-facts-and-support

L’écrivain Andreï Makine prend fait et cause pour Julian Assange. Au nom d’une circulation de l’information sans fard, capable d’arrêter le bras des puissances hégémoniques. Entretien en forme de plaidoyer vibrant et audacieux.

https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/culture-idees/280519/andrei-makine-pour-un-grand-prix-international-julian-assange

“We live in a very complex world. There’s a lot of confusion and it’s hard to know where to stand in this huge crisis that is happening, but I think standing behind Assange and Manning is where we should all be.” -

“Nous appelons à la libération de Julian Assange et de Chelsea Manning victimes de la vengeance d'états”

Inquiets du sort réservé à ces deux lanceurs d’alerte, tout particulièrement du fondateur de Wikileaks, Jean-Hervé Bradol et Rony Brauman, anciens présidents de Médecins sans frontières, dans une tribune au « Monde », demande à ce qu’il reçoive des soins.

https://www.lemonde.fr/idees/article/2019/12/18/nous-appelons-a-la-liberation-de-julian-assange-et-de-chelsea-manning-victimes-de-la-vengeance-d-etats_6023328_3232.html

Last night Julian called me. Here is what we talked about March 2020

https://www.yanisvaroufakis.eu/2020/03/24/last-night-julian-assange-called-me-here-is-what-we-talked-about/

Julian Assange just called. To talk about the pandemics effects on capitalism and politics! June 2020

https://www.yanisvaroufakis.eu/2020/06/13/julian-assange-just-called-to-talk-about-the-pandemics-effect-on-capitalism-politics/

French public sector strikers call to free Julian Assange

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/12/06/fras-d06.html

Julian Assange, ce grand homme qui meurt dans l'indifférence générale, Aurore Von Opstal

https://www.lalibre.be/debats/opinions/julian-assange-ce-grand-homme-qui-meurt-dans-l-indifference-generale-5dc17356d8ad58388747e783

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  • Last modified: 2020/07/11 12:10