The Torture Must Stop’: Doctors Urge Australia to Bring Julian Assange Back Home
AUSTRALIA (December 17, 2019) — A group of doctors has urged Foreign Minister Marise Payne to negotiate Julian Assange’s passage back to Australia for medical treatment.
More than 100 doctors have urged Australia to lobby for imprisoned WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to be returned home for urgent medical treatment.
The group has written an open letter to Foreign Minister Marise Payne calling for the 48-year-old to be returned to Australia.
“Should Mr. Assange die in a British prison, people will want to know what you, minister, did to prevent his death,” the letter says.
Mr. Assange is in Belmarsh Prison, a high-security London jail, awaiting a full hearing in Feburary.
The WikiLeaks founder is set to fight extradition to the US, where he faces 18 charges, including conspiring to commit computer intrusion.
The doctors are gravely concerned an Australian citizen’s survival could be endangered by a foreign government obstructing his healthcare.
“It is an even more serious matter for that citizen’s own government to refuse to intervene, against historical precedent and numerous converging lines of medical advice,” the letter says.
The doctors agree with the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer that Mr. Assange has been psychologically tortured.
Diagnostic radiology specialist Stephen Frost said it was beyond belief doctors had to urge the Australian and UK governments to give treatment to a torture victim.
“The torture must stop now, and Mr. Assange must be provided with immediate access to the health care which he so obviously needs before it is too late,” Dr Frost said.
Australian doctor and former Democrats NSW state politician Arthur Chesterfield-Evans said it was “chilling” to see Mr. Assange’s medical care being obstructed.
“If Australia believes in universal moral values of truth ahead of authoritarian regimes using fear and abusing legal process to silence journalists, it must act to protect Julian Assange, his life, and his health,” he said.
In November medics, from Australia, the UK, Europe and Sri Lanka wrote to British Home Secretary Priti Patel expressing serious concerns about Mr. Assange’s health.
More than 60 doctors wanted him transferred to a university teaching hospital but the demands were rebuffed.
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ACTION ALERT: Free Julian Assange. STOP Extradition to US
Phillip Adams started this petition to Marise Payne (Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women)
Julian Assange has been forcibly removed from political asylum and has been arrested. He is no longer in the Ecuadorian Embassy and instead is in British police custody.
Julian Assange now faces the prospect of extradition to the USA to face 175 years imprisonment for publishing facts delivered to him as a journalist and those facts revealed systemic government corruption and war crimes.
These were the exact issues he required protection from and why he accepted Ecuadorian political asylum.
Julian Assange is an Australian Citizen who had been “arbitrarily” detained for over 8 years and more recently had endured over 1 year of torture in the form of continuous solitary confinement. Deprived of sunlight, contact with the outside world and proper healthcare.
The United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner on Feb. 5, 2016 determined that Julian Assange’s arbitrary detention “should be brought to an end”.
Julian Assange is an awarded and respected international journalist who has never incorrectly published any news.
ACTION: We respectfully request the Prime Minister and/or the Foreign Minister of the Australian Government intervene and ensure Julian Assange’s freedom of safe passage and return to his home Australia or any other location that Julian Assange requests to travel to.
We further respectfully request that the Australian Government where influence can be made with friendly nations, that the Australian Government ensure that no extradition order is effected on Julian Assange from the USA that may otherwise impinge on his ongoing freedom of passage and existence.
Please, sign and share this petition. Thank you.