Hundreds of activists gathered in the Plaza de la Universidad of Barcelona on Monday night to show solidarity with of Wikileaks co-founder Julian Assange, and to protest against his eventual extradition to the US.
Footage shows some protesters wearing Guy Fawkes masks while others hold banners showing Assange’s face and the Catalan flag, as well as other symbols of the Catalan independence cause.
“Today we return to the Plaza de la Universidad to show our support to Julian Assange, against his extradition for exercising the right to information, and to demand his immediate release,” said Xavier Antich, a member of the Omnium Cultural organization.
Elisenda Paluzie, president of the Catalan National Assembly, recalled the link between Julian Assange and the Catalan independence movement, stating that “in September 2017 Julian Assange appeared by video conference precisely in this square. And he did it to give his support to the self-determination of Catalonia.”
Earlier on Monday, Assange’s extradition hearing began at London’s Woolwich Crown Court. The proceedings are expected to last at least a week, and then will be resumed on May 18 for three more weeks.
The founder of WikiLeaks has been behind bars in Belmarsh prison since May 2019, after he was sentenced to 50 weeks in prison for violating the terms of his bail to avoid extradition to Sweden on charges of sexual assault.
Although the sentence came to an end on 22 September, a British judge ordered Assange to remain in prison for the duration of his possible extradition to the United States due to his previous record.