#FreeAssange: Assange’s Father: ‘They Just Want to Murder Him’ – Consortium News 07 Oct. 2021

 By Joe Lauria
Special to Consortium News

John Shipton, Julian Assange’s father, said that after nearly 13 years of his son’s detention it is clear what the intention of the United States is. 

“They just want to murder him. That’s all. They want him dead,” Shipton said. 

“They discussed means of doing it. They found legal means of doing it. It’s twelve years. It’ no joke,” said Shipton. “They have been pursuing Julian Assange in the embassy, in fact they conspired to keep Julian in the embassy.”   

Assange faces a hearing on a U.S. appeal against extraditing him at the High Court in London at the end of this month. 

The U.S. is challenging a decision by Judge Vanessa Baraitser on Jan. 4 not to extradite Assange because of his high risk of suicide in a U.S. prison. Shipton called “complete rubbish” U.S. assurances to the High Court that Assange would not be put into harsh isolation if he is extradited.  

Joe Biden’s DOJ will argue in court that Assange isn’t that ill or suicidal. If there is to be another psychological examination of Assange ordered by the High Court, it could prolong the appeal process by a year, Shipton warned. 

Hiding Crimes By Focusing on Assange

Shipton said the benefits of WikiLeaks publications to people around the world, and even to governments, has been obscured by the attention the case has put on Assange. This shift away from the revelation of state crimes to his son’s psychology “in itself is a scandal,” Shipton told Sydney’s Politics in the Pub in a webcast co-produced by CN Live!

“It’s the manipulations of the Crown Prosecution Service and the Department of Justice that ensure that the entirety of the focus now is on Julian’s character and his psychology,” Shipton said. “Compare this to the Himalaya of crime and the benefits brought to the publics in the United Kingdom and the West by exposure of those crimes.” 

Shipton’s full remarks.(Article continues below):

The U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are over and Guantanamo is nearly closed, Shipton said.  “The revelations of WikiLeaks, through Chelsea Manning, worked their way through the body politic, and as a consequence, the people have removed their support from governments in pursuing those wars,” he said.

“The benefits of those leaks are tremendous. A gift to people,” said Shipton. But is is potentially a gift to governments too, if they acted wisely, he said.

“Every single politician in the world would benefit by supporting Julian. You might lose two votes. But you’ll get ten,” he said. “I can’t understand why the Australian government and other governments don’t put their shoulder behind this and solve it. It brings benefits, huge benefits to populations around the world and to governments, showing that they can act against clear injustices.”   

Shipton added: “The way out of this is clear to everybody: that the Australian government uses the facilities of negotiation and the imagination of skilled diplomats” to free his son. 

The appeal hearing in U.S. vs. Julian Assange is set for the High Court in London on Oct. 27 and 28. 

Consortium News, which has received praise for the best Assange coverage, will be in the courtroom to provide continuous coverage. 

 

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