Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Previous Prime Minister intervened to help political prisoner: Scott Morrison could do this for Julian Assange

“This is how diplomacy works,”   “You can pick up the phone, Mr Morrison, and speak with whoever the United Kingdom’s next prime minister is; requesting that Julian Assange not be extradited to the United States to face the very real possibility, if not the certainty, that he will die in prison.”

Former political prisoner pleads for Scott Morrison to not let Assange ‘die in jail’, The Age By Rob Harris, Filmmaker James Ricketson, who spent 15 months as a political prisoner in a Cambodian jail, has implored Prime Minister Scott Morrison to “pick up the phone” to his British counterpart to ensure Julian Assange does not die in prison.

There are growing fears for the psychical and mental health of the 48-year-old WikiLeaks founder, who is in a London prison fighting an extradition request to the United States, where he faces espionage charges relating to the release of classified files on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

In an open letter to Mr Morrison, Mr Ricketson has joined a “rising tide of voices” in support of Australian government intervention to bring Mr Assange back to Australia before full extradition proceedings in February.

“The evidence that Julian Assange is not being ‘treated fairly’ in accordance with UK law is now overwhelming, as is evidence of the psychological torture he is being subjected to in Belmarsh Prison,” Mr Ricketson writes.

“If Julian Assange does die in prison, will you, with a clear Christian conscience, be able to inform the Australian public, in all honesty, that you did all within your power (and more) to protect Assange’s legal and human rights.”

Mr Ricketson was arrested and charged with espionage in June 2017 for flying a drone over an anti-government rally in Phnom Penh. He was held in the notoriously overcrowded Prey Sar prison for 15 months until he was pardoned by Cambodian authorities.

The filmmaker said it was former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull who intervened to secure his release, despite the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s insistence that it could not interfere with another country’s legal proceedings.

“This is how diplomacy works,” he writes. “You can pick up the phone, Mr Morrison, and speak with whoever the United Kingdom’s next prime minister is; requesting that Julian Assange not be extradited to the United States to face the very real possibility, if not the certainty, that he will die in prison.”

A newly formed federal cross-party parliamentary group, comprising 11 MPs dedicated to advocating for the return of Mr Assange, will meet formally for the first time on Monday in Canberra. ….

Mr Morrison and Foreign Minister Marise Payne have repeatedly ruled out any intervention in the case, with the PM saying last month he believed Mr Assange should “face the music” in court.

The former Australian high commissioner to Britain earlier this month mocked the idea of Mr Morrison acting on calls from Mr Assange’s supporters to do all he could to bring him home from Belmarsh Prison, where he has been held since his April 11 arrest at the Ecuadorian embassy, which gave him asylum for almost seven years. https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/former-political-prisoner-pleads-for-scott-morrison-to-not-let-assange-die-in-jail-20191124-p53dks.html

November 25, 2019 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties, politics

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: