Join RSF’s tweetstorm urging President Biden and PM Albanese to agree a solution to #FreeAssange!
Join Reporters Without Borders (RSF) in a global tweetstorm from October 20 to 22, tagging US President Joe Biden and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese on the eve of Albanese’s state visit to Washington DC from October 23 to 26. RSF is urging the two leaders to reach a diplomatic solution in the case of Julian Assange that prevents his extradition to the US and allows for his immediate release from prison. To amplify this call, RSF is mobilizing supporters around the world to add their voices and ensure the #FreeAssange message is heard on the eve of this historic visit.
What is the Assange case about?
Julian Assange is the founder of WikiLeaks, which in 2010 published hundreds of thousands of leaked classified US diplomatic and military documents, informing public interest reporting around the world. The US Department of Justice has opened a criminal case against Assange in connection with the publication of the leaked documents. The majority of this case - 17 out of 18 counts in total - is under the Espionage Act, which lacks a public interest defense and urgently needs reform. Assange would be the first publisher tried under the Espionage Act, setting an alarming precedent that could be applied to any journalist or media organization anywhere in the world.
Assange is currently detained in London’s Belmarsh prison, where he has been held on remand since April 2019. He has been arbitrarily deprived of his liberty through various means since December 2010. Following lengthy extradition proceedings in London courts, Assange is awaiting a final hearing that will decide whether his appeal against the extradition order will be permitted. This hearing will mark the final stage of UK proceedings and could bring Assange dangerously close to extradition. If extradited to the US, Assange faces a possible prison sentence of up to 175 years.
What is RSF campaigning for?
RSF is calling for the US government to drop the charges against Assange, close the case, and allow for his immediate release from prison. RSF has also advocated for the UK government not to extradite Assange, and for the Australian government to secure a diplomatic solution with the US to prevent Assange’s extradition, allow for his release, and ensure he will spend no further time in prison.
RSF campaigns to #FreeAssange as a global priority because of the alarming implications his case has for journalism and press freedom. RSF defends Assange because of his contributions to journalism through the publication by WikiLeaks of leaked classified documents that informed public interest reporting around the world, exposing war crimes and human rights violations that have never been prosecuted.
1. Campaign kit
You can support RSF’s campaign by tweeting at President Biden (@JoeBiden) and Prime Minister Albanese (@AlboMP) between Friday, October 20 and Sunday, October 22, with #FreeAssange messaging urging the two leaders to reach a diplomatic solution in the Assange case before it is too late.
You can download the visual as an attachment.
I'm adding my voice to the global call on @JoeBiden and @AlboMP to reach a solution to #FreeAssange as an urgent priority! Prosecuting him will endanger media around the world and all of our right to know. Act now to protect journalism and press freedom before it's too late.
As @JoeBiden and @AlboMP meet in Washington DC this week, I'm joining the global call on both leaders to reach a solution for the release of Julian Assange as an urgent priority and protect the future of journalism. Enough is enough - it's time to #FreeAssange.
As an American, I call on @JoeBiden to use this week's visit by @AlboMP to put a stop to the case against Julian Assange once and for all. He should not be extradited or spend any more time in prison. It's time to #FreeAssange to protect journalism and all of our right to know!
As an Australian, I call on @AlboMP to ensure he returns from Washington DC with a solution agreed to release Julian Assange and prevent his extradition to the US. No one should face life in prison for publishing information in the public interest. It's time to #FreeAssange!