The Editors Guild of India (EGi) has urged the US government to withdraw all charges against Wikileaks promoter Julian Assange so that his “travesty of liberties ends.”
This comes after a UK court turned down the US government’s request to extradite Assange.
“Over the past decade Julian Assange has been subjected to persecution, including imprisonment for doing his journalistic duty of bringing truth to power. The US government, which has been leading this harassment and intimidation, has made a mockery of freedom of speech that is explicitly assured in the US constitution and what ought to be a universal democratic practice,” read a statement from the Guild.
If the Department of Justice, USA, does not drop charges under the espionage act of ‘publishing documents’ against Assange, it would have implications on how governments all over the world including India- perceive investigative and national security journalism, added EGi.
Further, it said, “Though the British court turned down the request for extraditing Assange, it did so on grounds of his mental condition and not for protecting his freedom of speech and exercising his journalistic duty. The Assange case could have been a path breaker to ensure that individuals exercising their democratic rights are protected against governments they scrutinise.”