Julian Assange Extradition Hearing Day 4

by Elizabeth Cook

This ain’t ready for prime time, as defend.wikileaks.org doesn’t have day 4 up yet, the Guardian hadn’t until moments ago, but Benn Quinn must be out sick, and Frances Perraudin was just phonin’ it in.  Anyhoo, it’ Big Bread Day and other chores for me, so here’s what I’ve found.

‘Julian Assange’s extradition hearing finishes a day early’, 9news.com.au, Feb. 28, 2020

“Earlier in court, Assange’s lawyers made an application for him to be freed from the dock, allowing the Australian to sit with them in open court.

Despite the move, however, the Judge refused to let Assange come out of the dock and argued that other measures could be taken for him to be able to better communicate with his lawyers.

Those measures include delaying the start of hearings each day so lawyers can take instructions from Assange and the possibility of the upcoming May hearings running longer than the three weeks scheduled, if necessary.

Earlier, the court heard Assange’s alleged offences are solely political because he was trying to change US government policy by exposing wrong-doing and war crimes.

Barrister Edward Fitzgerald argued that Assange wanted the US government to change its foreign policy when WikiLeaks released thousands of classified military and diplomatic files in 2010.

“We’ve seen WikiLeaks did effect change, that was one of the reasons there was (US troop) withdrawal (from Iraq), we also say that the US frequently said: ‘WikiLeaks opposes US policy in Afghanistan’,” he said.

“What other purpose can there be publishing the Apache helicopter strike (video) and (US) rules of engagement showing that the war conflicted with fundamental human rights?”[snip]

“The barrister said there was an English definition of a political offence, which was not purely dependent on the name of the offence like espionage, which Assange is charged with in the US.

Extradition is based on conduct, it is not anymore based on the names of offences,” he said.

Mr Lewis said there was no “political struggle” going on between the US government and “other factions” like WikiLeaks when the organisation was publishing the classified files.

“Any bare assertion that WikiLeaks was engaged in a struggle with the US government … needs to be examined far more,” he said.

He also said a political offence was a “dated” exemption in modern societies because the “times had changed” from when dissidents were trying to uphold liberal democracy.

Via uk.reuters.com today:

“Assange’s lawyer Fitzgerald said his client is protected by privileges in the U.S.-UK extradition treaty because he was trying to change U.S. government policy.

Fitzgerald said Assange did indeed change U.S. government policy after publishing classified information about Guantanamo Bay and the actions of the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“WikiLeaks didn’t just seek to induce change, it did induce change,” he said.”

‘Live Updates: London Court Holds Fourth Day of Hearings on Assange’s Extradition’, sputniknews.com, Feb 27, 2020

(Boy, howdy did Kevin Kosztola’s stock go up!  It’s a storify by Tweet, here are a few)

  15:14

Extraditing Assange is Bullying Masquerading as Justice – Former Correspondent for the Guardian

  14:58

International Observatory of Human Rights Calls on London Not to Extradite Assange to US

  14:35

‘You Can’t Have Your Cake and Eat it Too’ – Editor-in-Chief of WikiLeaks on Arguments of Prosecution

  14:20

‘If a 3-Week Hearing Becomes a 6-Week Hearing, So Be It’ – Judge

  12:55

Info Passed to Assange’s Defence Team to Allow Julian Access to Lawyers

US Gov’t Claims it Doesn’t Matter if Alleged Offences Are ‘Political’ in Assange’s Case

  • 11:28

There is Substantial Evidence Assange Was Subjected to Constant Surveillance – CCBE

Julian Assange Extradition Hearing – Day 4 Recap (Kevin Gosztola 28 mins)

6 responses to “Julian Assange Extradition Hearing Day 4

  1. Humanity Is Making A Very Important Decision When It Comes To Assange

    Medium, By Caitlin Johnstone, February 29

    The propagandists have all gone dead silent on the WikiLeaks founder they previously were smearing with relentless viciousness, because they no longer have an argument. The facts are all in, and yes, it turns out the US government is certainly and undeniably working to exploit legal loopholes to imprison a journalist for exposing its war crimes. That is happening, and there is no justifying it.

    So the narrative managers, by and large, have gone silent.

    Which is good. Because it gives us an opening to seize control of the narrative.

    […]

    This is it. This is the part of the movie where we collectively choose the red pill or the blue pill. We are collectively being asked a question here, and our answer to that question will determine the entire course we will take as a species.

    • thanks grayson; she’s right of course, but left out the part where he may die in belmarsh gitmo before the trial’s even over. some bloke gave it to me over yonder rather belatedly. his was the sole comment on my day 4 coverage over yonder at c99% (aside from three additions i’d brought.)

      craig murray was there, and his day 4 coverage is up; i haven’t even head the heart to read it.

  2. And now for the Big Picture!

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