For Immediate Release
Wednesday, July 7, 2021
Doctors for Assange
With the Prosecution Collapsing, Doctors Implore Biden to Drop Case Endangering the Health of Assange and the Health of Democracy
Link to letter: https://doctorsassange.org/letter-to-us-gov-07-07-21/
The doctors join politicians, press freedom and human rights groups urging President Biden to drop Espionage Act charges against Julian Assange
A group representing over 250 medical professionals from 35 countries today sent the following letter to President Biden, urging him to drop Espionage Act charges against Julian Assange for publishing activity. The group, Doctors for Assange, calls on the Biden Administration to “end this case that constitutes an egregious violation of press freedom, rule of law and human rights.” The authors ask the US leader to halt the misguided prosecution initiated by the Trump administration “before its dire consequences become your responsibility.”
Since its founding in 2019, Doctors for Assange has condemned the abusive treatment of Mr. Assange as a form of psychological torture that puts Assange’s life at risk, affirming the findings of the UN Rapporteur on Torture, Nils Melzer. The concern that Mr. Assange would be driven to suicide by the oppressive conditions in US prison was in fact the reason that the UK judge denied the US attempt to extradite Assange. In their letter, the doctors assert that the torture of Mr. Assange is ongoing due to his continued arbitrary detention in the UK.
The letter comes as the leading witness for the prosecution, a diagnosed sociopath convicted of fraud, forgery and child sexual abuse, confessed to making false claims against Assange in exchange for legal immunity. With the revelation the indictment was fraudulent, the case has effectively collapsed. This is the latest in a long series of violations of judicial integrity associated with the prosecution, including illegal spying on Assange and the denial of his right to consult with his attorneys.
According to the doctors, the collapse of the legal case against Assange makes his continued arbitrary detention in a dangerous prison all the more reprehensible, underscoring the urgent need for Biden to drop the case now.
On the same day the letter was sent, the UK High Court granted the US limited permission to appeal an earlier UK ruling against the US extradition request. Crucially, the High Court did not permit the US to appeal findings based on Assange’s medical and psychological status, and affirmed the previous judge’s findings regarding his clinical condition. The doctors note that in light of this ruling, the US “avenues for appeal appear limited.”
The doctors’ letter adds to recent calls for the case to be dropped by Australian, Italian, British and German Parliamentarians, and a US speaking tour by Assange’s father and brother to raise awareness and build pressure within the US.