TIME IS NOW FOR STRONG ACTION ON ASSANGE
by John Jiggens
The UK Home Office has ordered the extradition of Julian Assange to the US. The UK courts found it would not be “incompatible with his human rights, including his right to a fair trial and to freedom of expression” to extradite him to a country whose intelligence agencies plotted his kidnapping and murder, and where his ‘fair trial’ will be held in a court that always convicts.
The UK Supreme Court overturned the lower court decision against extradition after the US promised that their treatment of Assange would not be oppressive, unjust or an abuse of process. No doubt these judges would have accepted Saudis reassurances that they would treat Adam Khashoggi with great dignity too.
What can we do?
The new government are showing signs of standing up for Julian, as are the non-Murdoch press, but that means standing up to the US, and everyone is justifiably terrified of what the US bullies will do if they don’t get their way. The Albanese government must be persuaded that they have wide-spread Australian support.
Independent MP Andrew Wilkie, the chair of the Bring Julian Assange Home Parliamentary Group, condemned Britain’s decision an outrageous betrayal of the rule of law, media freedom and human rights, and he added that the time was up for the new federal government hinting at caring and then doing nothing.
“The new Australian government is now to be condemned for abandoning an Australian hero journalist facing the very real prospect of spending the rest of his life rotting in a US prison.”
The victory of Anthony Albanese and the Labor Party in the Australian election brings us new hope. Our new Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus issued a statement last year saying that Labor wanted the Assange matter ‘brought to an end’. Anthony Albanese, our new Prime Minister, said that he couldn’t see any purpose to keeping Assange in jail and that “enough is enough”.
But are these weasel words?
The battle to stop the extradition of Julian Assange hangs in the balance but it depends on all of us! Urge Labor to stand up for Julian! Join us on July 3, 2-4pm, Bunyapa Park, West End!
Email Albo: pm.gov.au/contact-your-pm
Senator Penny Wong, https://www.pennywong.com.au/contact/
Attorney General Mark Dreyfus, https://www.aph.gov.au/
Find them on Twitter: @AlboMP @SenatorWong @markdreyfusQCMP
Today Home Secretary of the United Kingdom, Priti Patel, granted the extradition of Julian Assange to the United States, setting a dangerous precedent for all media, publishers and journalists.
Mr Assange faces 175 years in a US prison under the 1917 Espionage Act for exposing evidence of US war crimes.
Members of the Australian Assange Campaign have called on Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Foreign Minister Penny Wong and Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus QC to do everything in their power to prevent the extradition and defend the rights of Australian citizens.
A spokesperson for the Campaign said they are confident the new Australian government is aware of the significance of the Home Secretary’s decision and of the dangerous precedent it sets.
“It effectively means any publisher or journalist can be extradited to the US for exposing that government’s crimes, no matter what their nationality or where in the world they have reported from,” they said.
While fighting the extradition, Mr Assange has spent the last three years detained in HMP Belmarsh, the United Kingdom’s highest security prison, without being convicted of any crime and without being granted bail.
All major human rights and journalism organisations in Australia and across the world have condemned the prosecution as an attack on press freedom, sovereignty, and democracy.
Write to your MP now and make it clear that Julian has suffered enough: https://ithaka.movie/take-action/
Louise and Leeanne
ithaka Impact Team
Please find below PEN International’s latest joint statement, condemning the decision to extradite Wikileaks founder and publisher Julian Assange to the US.
The statement is also available at the following link: https://pen-international.org/news/us-uk-decision-to-extradite-julian-assange-to-the-united-states-condemned
Special PEN screening for World Press Freedom Day, Tuesday, 3rd May at NOVA 6.30pm
Please book your tickets at the link below:
A father. A family. A fight for justice.
Directed and written by Ben Lawrence, produced by Gabriel Shipton.
Filmed over two years across the UK, Europe and the US, this documentary follows 76 year-old retired builder, John Shipton’s tireless campaign to save his son, Julian Assange.
The world’s most famous political prisoner, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, has become an emblem of an international arm wrestle over freedom of journalism, government corruption and unpunished war crimes.
Now with Julian facing a 175 year sentence if extradited to the US, his family members are confronting the prospect of losing Julian forever to the abyss of the US justice system.
This David-and-Goliath struggle is personal – and, with Julian’s health declining in a British maximum-security prison and American government prosecutors attempting to extradite him to face trial in the US , the clock is ticking.
Weaving historic archive and intimate behind-the-scenes footage, this story tracks John’s journey alongside Julian’s fiancée, Stella Moris, as they join forces to advocate for Julian. We witness John embark on a European odyssey to rally a global network of supporters, advocate to politicians and cautiously step into the media’s glare – where he is forced to confront events that made Julian a global flashpoint.
Ithaka provides a timely reminder of the global issues at stake in this case, as well as an insight into the personal toll inflicted by the arduous, often lonely task of fighting for a cause bigger than oneself.
Media Release 25 January 2022
- by Kathryn
Prime Minister Morrison must take action to secure Julian Assange’s freedom
“Prime Minister Scott Morrison must immediately call UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and US President Biden to seek their agreement to the dropping of all charges against Julian Assange. He is an Australian citizen who should be welcomed home to Australia,” said Kathryn Kelly, Co-convenor of the Alliance Against Political Prosecutions.
“This travesty of justice has been going on for far too long. The fact that Assange published information about US war crimes in Iraq is what he is being persecuted for, and further, it has been shown that a witness in his case lied and is an unreliable witness,” she continued.
“Julian Assange has not seen freedom for 10 years. It is a sentence longer than most criminals serve, and he is not a criminal. His health is failing – this inhumanity and injustice must stop,” Ms Kelly said.
“The Prime Minister should use his influence with both Prime Minister Boris Johnson and President Joe Biden to secure Assange’s release.”
Kathryn Kelly Co-convenor, Alliance Against Political Prosecutions
0417 269 984 PO Box 549, Curtin, ACT 2605
Bernard Keane, CIA’s Assange abduction/murder plan raises questions for Australian government, 27 September, 2021
Amy Goodman,Attorney: U.S. Case Against Julian Assange Falls Apart, as Key Witness Says He Lied to Get Immunity, Democracy Now, 28 June 2021