Assange Supporters Hold Protests

Julian Assange supporters protested on Tuesday in front of the British Home Office after the Westminster Magistrates’ court recently approved the WikiLeaks founder’s extradition to the United States.

The protesters criticized the British court’s order to extradite Assange, saying the move was politically motivated and a threat to press freedom.

Assange faces espionage charges for allegedly exposing national defense information, including documents related to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars ten years ago.

On April 20, the Westminster Magistrates’ court in London issued an order to extradite Assange to the U.S.

Britain’s Home Secretary Priti Patel has not yet decided whether to uphold the court’s decision or not. 

Dunja Mijatovic, the Council of Europe commissioner for human rights, appealed to Patel in a letter to decide against the extradition of Assange. Mijatovic said that Assange’s case poses a “wider human rights implication,” which the judicial process had not considered.

Mijatovic also said that extraditing Assange would raise questions about the security of journalists publishing information of public interest, such as those that violate human rights.

“The broad and vague nature of the allegations against Mr. Assange, and of the offenses listed in the indictment, are troubling as many of them concern activities at the core of investigative journalism in Europe and beyond,” Mijatovic said.

Patel can announce her decision on Assange’s extradition to the U.S. anytime Wednesday until May 31.

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