Reporters Without Borders, An important milestone in the Assange case

RSF for Assange
RSF is at the core of a group of press freedom and human rights organizations rising to Julian Assange’s defense. Did he publish leaked classified documents? He did, like many establishment news corporations have done. Assange’s crimes, however, were the release of a video of US forces killing members of a Reuters news crew, and later, a trove of documents about a US foreign policy based largely upon lies, and yet later, some sleazy political memos from the Hillary Clinton camp. His true offense was embarrassing US politicians and Pentagon brass. RSF graphic.

Monday’s hearing in London could have delivered
Julian Assange to a US prison by now

by Reporters Without Borders (RSF by its French initials)

On the 20th of May, the UK High Court granted Julian Assange the right to appeal his extradition to the United States to face trial and possible imprisonment for life for publishing leaked classified information. Reporters Without Borders (RSF) welcomes the decision, which gives Assange a final chance in the UK courts to stop his extradition and challenge US assurances that he would face a fair trial.

This decision marks an important milestone in Julian Assange’s legal case, opening up a vital new path to prevent extradition. The two grounds for appeal that have been granted mean that the UK courts will consider the issues at the very heart of this case, related to freedom of expression and the First Amendment.

If extradited to the United States, Assange faces up to 175 years in prison. He would be the first publisher extradited under the Espionage Act, setting a dangerous precedent that could be applied to any journalist or media organization anywhere in the world.

RSF has been the only NGO to monitor all four years of extradition proceedings against Assange. RSF representatives have also gained rare access to visit Assange in Belmarsh prison, after initially being barred. RSF has also advocated directly with the US government and continues to urge the Biden administration to find a political solution to the case to prevent Assange’s extradition and allow for his release from prison without further delay.

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