UK wants to give Assange to people who ‘contemplated killing’ him – WikiLeaks editor-in-chief to RT — Analysis
It’s “shameful in every respect” that the UK wants to extradite Julian Assange to the US, the nation where top officials had purported plans to snatch or even assassinate him, the editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks told RT.
“We are dealing here with a nation where individuals on the top level … at the CIA and the White House, contemplated kidnapping or killing Julian Assange,” Kristinn Hrafnsson said, referring to a Yahoo News report detailing the CIA’s hunt after Assange under then-Director Mike Pompeo.
The High Court in London just came to a decision – on UN Human Rights Day – that it is OK to extradite an individual to a country which contemplated killing that individual. It is shameful from every angle.
Hrafnsson spoke to RT after a ruling of the UK’s High Court overturned a January refusal to extradite Assange to the US issued by a magistrates’ court. In the latest decision, Hrafnsson said that the judge had to inform the US about her concern that Assange may be placed in abusive conditions in US prisons.
During the appeal hearings, lawyers representing the US government offered diplomatic assurances to the contrary – though supporters of Assange say the words of the Americans should not be trusted.
“Those assurances are not worth the paper they are written on,”Hrafnsson spoke.
If the magistrates’ court now reverses its earlier decision, Assange’s defense team will file an appeal, the WikiLeaks representative said. Although it may be months before the decision is made whether or not the publisher will go to America to face espionage and other charges that carry maximum sentences of 175 years, it could still take some time.
READ MORE: Julian Assange’s extradition battle: What you need to know
Hrafnsson stated that Assange’s years under restriction and surveillance, which included more than two years at Belmarsh Prison in top security, are worrying for his well-being.
“I will keep my hopes realistic, but this is the right thing to do. He needs to be released from jail. Stella and his family should have him. [Moris] and their two boys, celebrating Christmas with them.”