Contributed by Ugly
More than 100 doctors around the world have written to the Australian government, asking it to “protect the life of its citizen” Julian Assange. Not that it has taken too much notice in the past.
A group of Australian parliamentarians across party lines have come together to discuss what can be done for him.
Assange is obviously suffering serious health problems, caused by his incarceration and treatment over the years. Doctors who have seen him are saying it. Family and others close to him are saying it. Experts warn that his life could be at risk.
To have this ignored by your own government is such a low act. Australia’s government is failing its responsibility to one of its citizens. If this can be done to Julian Assange it can happen to anyone.
The usual retort is to suggest that he must go through the legal process of the country he is in, and that if he has committed the crime, he must do the time.
The truth is that the United Kingdom, which now has him is custody, is contravening its own legal processes, if not by the letter of the law, by enough to distort it out of recognition.
He is in prison although he has not been convicted on any crime. He was locked up for a year for breaching bail, over an application by the Swedish authorities to question him. There is no charge.
Julian Assange remains in prison because he has been designated as a risk of absconding. There is still no charge against him.
It’s all because the United States has made an application to have him extradited there to face charges for treason, although he is not a US citizen. How someone can be a traitor to a country they are not citizen of remains a mystery.
All he did was expose documents that provided evidence of wrongdoing by politicians, agencies and corporations of that country. They laid bare the extent of the deceit and corruption in high places.
This is what good journalists and publishers are supposed to do.
The Australian government has not shown any appetite for the truth, transparancy and the right to report, and joins in the conspiracy to silence a courageous individual.
Further evidence is now coming to light. A judicial investigation by the Audiencia Nacional in Spain, the national court, is investigating allegations that while Julian Assange was in the Ecuadorian embassy in London, he was spied on, listened to and had his computer data scrapped and sold off to US intelligence agencies.
The allegation first came to light in the Spanish newspaper El Pais. A Spanish defence and private security company, called Undercover Global SL. It provided security for the Ecuadorian embassy and moonlighted as a spy for the CIA, violating privacy laws and legal privilege between lawyer and client. The evidence to back the allegations includes sworn testimony.
According to Guy Goodwin-Gill, professor of law at the University of New South Wales and legal advisor to Assange’s legal team, what comes out of this will form part of the legal argument to show that he would not receive a fair trial in the United States. This was said during a speech at the International Law Association in Sydney,
The extradition hearing is expected to begin in February, and involves eighteen charges carrying up to 175 years imprisonment.
This is likely to be drawn-out and may be followed by a case before the supreme Court.
There is remains the question mark over whether Julian Assange will be able to cope or even die. Doctors say he needs urgent medical care outside the prison system. This is being ignored.
Australia must speak up to prevent a serious miscarriage of justice.