After another day of hearings in the extradition trial of Julian Assange in London, on Thursday, John Shipton, Assange’s father, said the indictment against the WikiLeaks founder was meant to “cover crimes against humanity and war crimes.”
“The end of the indictment from Kronberg, from the United States mentions people disappeared as an accusation against Julian,” Shipton said outside the Old Bailey courthouse. “There were 1 million dead in Iraq, and 38 million people displaced right across the Middle East. They’re their disappearances and that’s the crime. What we’re seeing here today is people trying to cover crimes against humanity and war crimes. A list longer than you could possibly contemplate without tears.”
Meanwhile, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) director of international campaigns Rebecca Vincent, said NGOs such as RSF and Amnesty International do not have official access to the trial despite a “sea of empty chairs” in the overflow room.
Activists gathered outside the court held signs, shouted slogans and could be seen gifting a bottle of whisky to journalist and former British ambassador Craig Murray, who had been one of few journalists able to access the courtroom producing reports daily.
The Wikileaks founder is fighting extradition to the United States where he faces 18 charges related to the publication of material from Chelsea Manning. He has been behind bars in Belmarsh Prison since he was dragged out of the Ecuadorian Embassy in April 2019. He faces multiple charges in the US related to espionage.