More than 300 doctors and medical professionals from around the world have appealed for the immediate release of Julian Assange from prison in the UK, due to the serious deterioration of health demonstrated by the fighting he suffered in October, during an extradition hearing before trial. British High Court.
Doctors for Assange announced on 22 December an open letter, published below, to Australian Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, asking him to seek the immediate release of the WikiLeaks founder on medical grounds. The letter comes with this summons based on Joyce’s recent statements suggesting that the US extradition request against Assange should now be dropped.
The fact that hundreds of doctors have once again written and warned about Assange’s serious medical condition underscores the serious danger he faces as he spends another year behind bars, with extradition hanging over his head and possible life imprisonment on trumped-up charges. espionage in the United States.
But it should be noted that Joyce’s comments are completely hypocritical. They are designed to counter growing popular demand for Assange’s freedom, and stay in line with the Australian government’s longstanding refusal, from both the Liberal-National governing coalition and the current opposition Labor Party, to intervene on behalf of Assange, an Australian citizen.
“I have no power in the UK or the United States over this matter. I have no position in the British courts,” Joyce . said [engelsk tekst] in his chronicle published in the media group Nine Media newspaper. The government’s self-reflected position, namely to “respect British judicial proceedings”, although the UK High Court’s decision on 10 December, to pave the way for Assange’s extradition, is another quasi-legal travesty of the British judiciary.
The Australian Government has reaffirmed this position in response to every previous call from Doctors for Assange since 2019 to release him. Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne reiterated her position in response on April 24 to an earlier letter from Doctors for Assange, which asked the government to seek the release of Assange due to his very poor health, after years of imprisonment and psychological torture. In his response, now published by doctors for the first time, as an attachment to their new letter, Payne once again scornfully stated: “Australia has no role in this process.”
In fact, the Australian government was subsequently directly responsible for Assange’s mistreatment. Since Gillard’s Greens-backed Labor government in 2010, they have been centrally involved in a conspiracy with US, UK and Swedish authorities to jail Assange and be extradited to the United States for his strong and widely read WikiLeaks exposure to atrocities, mass espionage. and regime change operations carried out by the United States and its allies.
WSWS and the Socialist Equality Party continued to fight for the development of a mass movement in the working class for Assange’s freedom, as part of the struggle against the entire capitalist economic and social order, which was responsible for his imprisonment. Last week, we held an online public emergency crisis meeting to discuss how we should continue this struggle.
Doctor for Assange
Letter to Barnaby Joyce MP, Deputy Prime Minister of Australia, 22 December 2021
Dear Deputy Prime Minister,
We would like to thank and commend you for your recent statements urging the United States to drop the extradition request for Julian Assange.
We do not group more than 300 doctors and medical professionals from around the world, who care about Julian Assange’s health, and the health of our democracy. We have been writing letters to the governments of the United Kingdom, Australia and the United States since November 2019, warning that Julian Assange is in fragile health as a result of his treatment in the UK, as a result of America’s unparalleled accusations. , and that he could die in prison. We have requested the release of Mr Assange on urgent medical grounds, as a convicted, non-violent, Australian journalist and publisher imprisoned in a British high security prison for his journalistic activities. Our letters have received extensive media coverage, also on major news channels around the world, and our alerts have been published twice in Lancet.
We are writing to you now in light of recent reports that Assange has suffered what has been described as a minor stroke, and who is showing signs of neurological deterioration. As concerned doctors, including many living in Australia, we urge you, as Deputy Prime Minister of Australia, to intervene with the UK Government to seek the immediate release of Mr Assange on urgent medical grounds.
You make the important point, that Mr Assange did not commit any crime, neither in the UK nor in Australia, where his publication is imprisoned. He is not guilty or charged with anything in England. In addition, the crimes he is alleged to have committed in the United States, under the Espionage Act, are political. As citizens, we are concerned that Assange’s extraterritorial persecution threatens national sovereignty, the rule of law, human rights and press freedom around the world. As doctors, we are concerned that news of Assange’s minor stroke, in the context of his dramatic physical decline, underscores that his imprisonment is also increasingly threatening his health, and even his life.
It’s important to note, as we’ve been warning for now for two years, that cardiovascular events, such as strokes, are predictable and preventable outcomes of the abuse Assange has endured and continues to experience. We wrote in our first letter to the Australian Government, in December 2019, to ensure that the Government is made aware of the medical risks to its citizens, imprisoned for their journalism:
(1) The case of Julian Assange is medically complex and critical for two main reasons: (1) Assange has been evaluated as suffering from “all the typical symptoms of prolonged exposure to mental torture” by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, and the team’s rapporteur’s medical report; and
(2) Assange’s medical status as a victim of torture was exacerbated by a history of years of medical neglect, and his fragile health condition at the Ecuadorian embassy.
[Et slikt tilfelle] involves the interaction of potentially harmful psychological and medical factors… Through immunosuppressive and cardiovascular mechanisms, chronically activated and persistent stress physiology leads to susceptibility to a number of potentially catastrophic illnesses and diseases, including, but not limited to, cancer and cardiovascular pathology.
To ensure that the Australian Government is also informed of the risks associated with its own inaction, we write:
If Assange dies in a British prison, people will want to know what you are, Minister [Payne], do to prevent his death.
(Please see Annexes 1 to 5 of the letter for all correspondence with the Australian Government).
Following the news that Assange was suffering from cardiovascular disease, under extreme stress on 27 October, the first day of hearing in the UK High Court, we issued a statement on 12 December (ref. Appendix 6), in which we note:
This dangerous deterioration in Mr Assange’s health condition underscores the urgent concerns raised by him Doctor for Assange two years ago. Therefore, Doctors for Assange is once again calling for Assange to be released from prison so that he can have access to consistent, independent and high-quality medical care – which is impossible for him in Belmarsh Prison.
Regarding the US extradition request upheld by the High Court, despite Assange’s deteriorating health condition, we write:
The assurance that Assange would not be subjected to harsh prison conditions by the agents who had plotted to kidnap and kill him is a joke. That High Court being able to accept such a ridiculous presentation, which describes guarantees as “a serious obligation offered by one government to another”, raises serious questions about the independence, impartiality and integrity of the UK judiciary.
Of great importance, in the “serious liability” of the United States, accepted by the High Court, “US government retains its authority»To be able to apply a special administrative measure (SAM) to Mr Assange, and to be able to refer him to [spesialfengselet] ADX Florence, two of the toughest and most brutal prison sentences in the US penal arsenal. Both facilities violate the Convention Against Torture, to which Australia is a party, and embody the oppressive US prison conditions on which the US extradition request was denied.
In light of these alarming medical and legal developments, we are writing to you now to ask you to assess Assange’s serious health condition, and the real possibility that his continued untenable detention in the UK could be fatal, even before any extradition to the United States.
Our previous concern may have been dismissed by your co-workers as exaggerated. They do not. Regarding the underlying cardiovascular pathology, we have confirmed. We don’t want to be confirmed in cases related to Mr Assange’s survival.
We worry that Assange’s small visible impact may be the tip of the visible medical iceberg. The symptoms really show it. Therefore, it is imperative that Assange is released from prison, where his health will continue to deteriorate further, and where his complex medical needs cannot be met, and that he immediately receive high-quality independent medical care.
We therefore urge you, as Deputy Prime Minister, to take action against the UK Government to immediately release Mr Assange for urgent medical reasons. We repeat that he is an Australian citizen, innocent before the law, and not guilty or charged with anything in the UK.
Doctor for Assange