WikiLeaks The U.N Working Group on Arbitrary Detention rules IN FAVOUR of Julian Assange

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Geelong_Sicko

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Some good news, at least in light of the political ramifications stemming from this whole mess;

http://www.smh.com.au/world/un-rules-in-favour-of-assange-20160204-gmlojw

A United Nations panel considering the "unlawful detention" of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has ruled in the Australian's favour, the BBC has reported.

The news comes hours after Assange said he would hand himself over to authorities if the UN announces he has lost his case against arrest.

Julian Assange has been in the Ecuadorean embassy in London for more than three years...

...According to the Justice4Assange website, on Friday the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) will publicly announce its verdict in the application made by Assange for "request of relief" in the case brought against him by Sweden.

The WGAD decision was made two weeks ago and has been provided to the countries involved.

The Australian is wanted for questioning in Sweden over a sex assault allegation, which he has always denied.

"Should the UN announce tomorrow that I have lost my case against the United Kingdom and Sweden, I shall exit the embassy at noon on Friday to accept arrest by British police as there is no meaningful prospect of further appeal," Assange said in the statement posted on the Wikileaks Twitter account.

"However, should I prevail and the state parties be found to have acted unlawfully, I expect the immediate return of my passport and the termination of further attempts to arrest me."

In the application to the WGAD, Assange's team submitted that he "has been deprived of fundamental liberties against his will", the deprivation of his liberty is "arbitrary and illegal", and he "faces a serious risk of refoulement to the United States".

Assange fears Sweden will extradite him to the United States, where he could be put on trial over WikiLeaks' publication of classified military and diplomatic documents, one of the largest information leaks in US history.

The application also mentions his state of mental and physical health and concludes with:

"This is an application framed by political events, but at its heart, it is about a person who has been deprived of his liberty in an arbitrary manner for an unacceptable length of time. If all the names, details and events were redacted, it could be distilled to the simple and irrefutable fact that a political refugee, who has never been charged, has been deprived of their liberty for nearly four years, and confined in a very small space for over two years. The matter has come to a head because his mental and physical health are imperiled. This situation does not only affect him, but also his young children who are being denied the protection and affection of their father. The situation is in urgent need of a remedy. WGAD has both the power and the duty to grant it."

If the group concludes that Assange is being unlawfully detained, the UN is expected to call on Britain and Sweden to release him...

The thing I'm worried about is that the WGAD can of course call on any nation to amend their course of action - but is the nation/s in question actually BOUND by the WGAD's recommendations?

As with all things Assange, I guess we'll have to keep watching and waiting.
 

little graham

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Since he has been illegally detained by the British on trumped up charges, how much money have they made from the war mongering his journalism was uncovering?

10? 20 billion?
 

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Procrastinator35

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Some good news, at least in light of the political ramifications stemming from this whole mess;

The thing I'm worried about is that the WGAD can of course call on any nation to amend their course of action - but is the nation/s in question actually BOUND by the WGAD's recommendations?

As with all things Assange, I guess we'll have to keep watching and waiting.

The only good thing to come out of all this; is the thoroughly naked exposure of the so-called 'defenders of the free world' the U.S govt, as a tyrannical, hypocritical, war-mongering regime....Far worse than any of the so-called enemy's of democracy.

We all owe this man a huge debt of gratitude for exposing the worst criminals currently on earth....The U.S State Dept. The C.I.A & Washington.
 

Lester Burnham

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How is hiding in an embassy being illegally detained? Were they British charges?

Notwithstanding the broader issues it would interesting to see the actual judgment from WGAD. Assange is not currently detained by the UK, arbitrarily or illegally. He has been voluntarily spending time in the Ecuadorean embassy. And there is an outstanding European arrest warrant that the UK is obliged to pursue based on an allegation of rape in Sweden. Is WGAD making a determination that i) a UK arrest based on the outstanding Euro warrant and ii) the allegation of rape in Sweden - are both invalid?
 

Stax on the mill

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Hope the Brits and Swedes tell U.N to take a long jump off a short pier. Who was on the panel making another ludicrous U.N finding this time?

Based on previous track record it wouldn't surprise if it was the ilk of Yemen, Sudan, Syria, Somalia, those fine upstanding bastions of democracy and human rights defenders.
 

little graham

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Senator Ludlam said he had written to Mr Turnbull before his last meeting with US President Barack Obama, asking the Prime Minister to take up the case of Mr Assange."We should spare a thought for Chelsea Manning, who is to spend decades behind bars, or Edward Snowden, who is living in exile in Moscow," he said."That is what people are worried about, that you end up in Guantanamo Bay not for crimes of terrorism but for acts of publishing. That is what this has been about from the beginning."

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-05/julian-assange-arbitrarily-detained-un-rules/7144322
 

Geelong_Sicko

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Hmmm...

...But both Britain and Sweden denied that Mr Assange was being deprived of freedom, noting that he had entered the embassy voluntarily...

That's the ENTIRE issue, though. Julian isn't holed up because he's afraid to defend himself against the unlawful coercion/rape allegations - he's worried that because Sweden has not assured him that they wouldn't immediately deliver him into Washington's clutches he in effect has no option but to claim legal asylum in a third nation. The threat of arrest and being turned over to a nation that wants his arse in a sling for the act of helping to blow the whistle on various clandestine military and intelligence activities, especially in light of Private Manning's fate means he had no other choice.

Literally none.

Because Washington's potential charges against him are political (whistle-blowing) he believes he has a just case in looking for that asylum. By the British government's own admission ( 'we will arrest Assange as soon as he leaves the embassy') they are ensuring that Julian has extremely good grounds on which to worry for his own personal safety.

The U.N Working Group on Arbitrary Detention's findings bear that out. Unfortunately they are NOT binding, so Julian is kind of back to square one...

EDIT: Changed allegation from 'unlawful sex' to the correct 'unlawful coercion'.
 
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Procrastinator35

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The UN committee also ruled his time in goal and on home d was deprivation of liberty and he's entitled to compensation. The British excuse about the embassy siege is worthless.

I reckon the poms are having a bob each way TBH....He's stuck in a political bind & can do no further damage, with his reputation internationally smudged, having these arbitrary sex crimes leveled against him....The yanks have him precisely where they want him: Cornered, smudged reputation (to a degree) & neutered.

Can't see him going anywhere anytime soon....Catch 22.
 

Lester Burnham

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That's the ENTIRE issue, though. Julian isn't holed up because he's afraid to defend himself against the unlawful sex/rape allegations - he's worried that because Sweden has not assured him that they wouldn't immediately deliver him into Washington's clutches he in effect has no option but to claim legal asylum in a third nation. The threat of arrest and being turned over to a nation that wants his arse in a sling for the act of helping to blow the whistle on various clandestine military and intelligence activities, especially in light of Private Manning's fate means he had no other choice.

How is the rape allegation unlawful?
 

Geelong_Sicko

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How is the rape allegation unlawful?

Whoops. I thought one of the charges was 'unlawful sexual contact'. The charge is actually 'unlawful coercion'.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-11803703

Sweden has issued an international arrest warrant for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in a rape case.

He is wanted on suspicion of rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion - allegations he denies. They stem from a visit to Sweden in August.

Mr Assange, an Australian who does not live in Sweden, says the allegations are part of a smear campaign.

Wikileaks has published confidential material relating to US military activities in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A Stockholm prosecutor started an investigation in the summer, but the case was dropped by the chief prosecutor a day later.

In September, Sweden's Director of Prosecution, Marianne Ny, reopened the investigation, but did not request Mr Assange's detention at the time...

I didn't mean to imply the allegations themselves were unlawful. I'll amend the post you responded to. Cheers:thumbsu:
 

Lester Burnham

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I didn't mean to imply the allegations themselves were unlawful. I'll amend the post you responded to. Cheers:thumbsu:

Ah right. My bad. That's what I thought you meant. Carry on :thumbsu:

But I don't understand WGAD's ruling. Are they saying the allegations are unlawful? And that the extradition request is unlawful?
 

Play by Numbers

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The U.K. believe is warrant is valid.
If Sweden actually did want to resolve the situation, they could easily do so. Question him at the embassy and/or provide a guarantee he will not be extradited to the USA.

That way, if there is any grounds to the original accusations, they can be tested by the Swedish legal system.

This will never happen, as the allegations being untested provides a powerful PR hit to Assange, likewise, given the procedural issues, could expose the prosecutors office to pointed criticism.

If Assange is guilty of not wearing a condom when requested to, or ignoring a break in the condom, then under Swedish law, if the facts support this justice should be seen to be done. However, given the way the Swedish government has behaved, ignoring protocol such as refusing to question a suspect abroad, making a tremendous political song and dance about about questioning him, despite not even making a strong case for formal charges and the fact both witnesses have withdrawn support for the initial allegations, I get the feeling the last thing they actually want is to bring charges against Assange in Sweden and initiate legal proceedings.

It does look like a ploy from the outside, however, the best result would be to guarantee his safety, thus if he is truly guilty, he will have no more room to manouvre and avoid Swedish justice.
 

Messenger

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If Sweden actually did want to resolve the situation, they could easily do so. Question him at the embassy and/or provide a guarantee he will not be extradited to the USA.

That way, if there is any grounds to the original accusations, they can be tested by the Swedish legal system.

This will never happen, as the allegations being untested provides a powerful PR hit to Assange, likewise, given the procedural issues, could expose the prosecutors office to pointed criticism.

If Assange is guilty of not wearing a condom when requested to, or ignoring a break in the condom, then under Swedish law, if the facts support this justice should be seen to be done. However, given the way the Swedish government has behaved, ignoring protocol such as refusing to question a suspect abroad, making a tremendous political song and dance about about questioning him, despite not even making a strong case for formal charges and the fact both witnesses have withdrawn support for the initial allegations, I get the feeling the last thing they actually want is to bring charges against Assange in Sweden and initiate legal proceedings.

It does look like a ploy from the outside, however, the best result would be to guarantee his safety, thus if he is truly guilty, he will have no more room to manouvre and avoid Swedish justice.

I watched an interview with one of Assange's legal team for the UN brief and she was asked directly whether if Swedish authorities rolled up to the Ecuadorian embassy today would they be able to question Julian Assange. The answer, surprisingly wasn't "yes", it was "it's not that simple". This seems to be due to the Ecuadorians, whom I suspect do a lot of Assange's obfuscation for him.

My lay person understanding of extradition is that the petitioning jurisdiction has to prove it has a substantial case and that the alleged action is a crime in the jurisdiction in which the hearing is being held. I don't see how Sweden could provide a blanket immunity from extradition.
 

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