United States President Joe Biden will be reminded of his own words at a protest when he arrives for the Quad summit in Gadi/Sydney, on May 24, that journalism is not a crime and that the US must drop Julian Assange’s extradition order.
Australian Walkley Award journalist Assange is still imprisoned in Britain and has suffered psychological torture for the very same journalism for which he won an award.
Biden’s hypocrisy is as stark as Australia’s embarrassing and dangerous subservience to the US administration.
As war crimes whistleblower David McBride said: “While claiming Australia as its closest ally, the US’ failure to even make the slightest concessions in the case of Julian Assange shows the true nature of AUKUS as one of master and slave.”
Neither foreign affairs minister Penny Wong, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese or the new Ambassador to the US, Kevin Rudd, has been able to confirm if they have had direct talks with Biden on Assange and freedom of information findings have revealed there has been zero written representation from Foreign Affairs.
Stephen Kenny, former lawyer for David Hicks and who is now working for Assange in Australia, will be speaking at a protest calling for Assange's freedom during Biden’s visit.
“As the Australian solicitor for Julian Assange I would welcome President Biden to Australia on the condition that he is coming to enter into appropriate discussions about the withdrawing of charges against Julian.
“We are told by American contacts that the Australian government has raised the issue, but not ‘pressed’ it.”
He said Australia does not accept Assange’s continuing detention and that he should be released as a matter of urgency, before his health deteriorates further.
A Sydney Morning Herald poll on May 12 reveals that 79% want Biden to drop the extradition.
[Stephen Kenny will speak alongside Stella Assange, David McBride and Julian Assange’s brother Gabriel Shipton and father John Shipton and Greens Senator Peter Wish-Wilson at the rally in Hyde Park at the Archibald Fountain on May 24 at 10am.]