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Last Update: 3 Day and 13 Hour and 38 Minute ago
News code: 29044
Published Date: Saturday 22 February 2020 - 14:45:55
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Amnesty demands US drop charges against WikiLeaks founder

Amnesty demands US drop charges against WikiLeaks founder
World  - Amnesty International is demanding the United States drop all charges against Julian Assange, days before the WikiLeaks founder battles extradition from the UK.

The human rights organisation says the espionage charges against Mr Assange are a chilling blow to publishers and journalists.

Mr Assange's extradition trial starts on February 24, where he faces a US prison sentence of up to 175 years over his organisation's release of classified American diplomatic cables and Pentagon files on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, some of which revealed US war crimes.

He has been charged with 17 counts of spying and as well as conspiring to commit computer intrusion.

"The US government's unrelenting pursuit of Julian Assange for having published disclosed documents that included possible war crimes committed by the US military is nothing short of a full-scale assault on the right to freedom of expression," Amnesty spokesman Massimo Moratti said today.

"The potential chilling effect on journalists and others who expose official wrongdoing by publishing information disclosed to them by credible sources could have a profound impact on the public's right to know what their government is up to."

In addition, international human rights law and standards forbid the transfer of an individual to another country where there is a real risk they would face serious human rights violations. Were Julian Assange to be extradited or subjected to transfer in any other manner to the USA, the UK would be in breach of these obligations.

 

Amnesty International also fears the Australian could face human rights violations in the US, including prolonged solitary confinement.

 

News Code: 29044
Published Date: Saturday 22 February 2020 - 14:45:55
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