Journalism is on trial

Julian Assange is the founder of WikiLeaks and is charged by the Trump government with publishing the Afghan and Iraq war logs for which he could face 175 years in jail.

He is currently in Belmarsh prison awaiting his four-day trial, starting on 24th February at Belmarsh Magistrates Court. Former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray has said: “He has the symptoms of a torture victim brought blinking into the light, particularly in terms of disorientation, confusion, and the real struggle to assert free will through the fog of learned helplessness.”

The UN working group on arbitrary detention issued a statement saying that “the right of Mr. Assange to personal liberty should be restored”.

Massimo Moratti of Amnesty International has publicly stated on their website that, “Were Julian Assange to be extradited or subjected to any other transfer to the USA, Britain would be in breach of its obligations under international law.”

Human Rights Watch published an article saying, “The only thing standing between an Assange prosecution and a major threat to global media freedom is Britain. It is urgent that it defend the principles at risk.”

The NUJ has stated that the “US charges against Assange pose a huge threat, one that could criminalise the critical work of investigative journalists & their ability to protect their sources”.