News Release

As U.S. Seeks Assange Extradition, Some Pushback From Australia


Lindorff and Ridenour are long-time independent journalists affiliated with This Can’t Be Happening. They just wrote the piece “U.S./U.K. Seek to Silence Julian Assange and Free Press, Australia Says ‘Enough,’” which notes recent developments that have received scant attention in the U.S. [Also see recent piece by Andrew Cockburn in Harper’s: “Alternative Facts: How the media failed Julian Assange” which corrects a series of myths about the Assange case.]

Lindorff and Ridenour write: “On April 4, in what could be a major positive development in the 11-year entrapment and four-year solitary confinement by Britain of WikiLeaks founder and publisher Julian Assange, he was visited for the first time in the hell-hole of Belmarsh Prison by the Australian Labour Party-led government’s new High Commissioner to the U.K., Stephen Smith.

“After Smith’s visit to the tiny cell where Assange has been confined for what will be four years come this April 19, fighting a Washington extradition request that if approved and acted upon would have him facing espionage charges in a U.S. court, Australia’s Labour Party Prime Minister Anthony Albanese confirmed that he had ‘said publicly that I have raised the issues’ of the U.S. charges under a century-old Espionage Act that has never before been used against a journalist, and of the extradition effort as well as the 12-year dogged pursuit by the U.S. of the WikiLeaks publisher.

“Albanese said he had ‘encouraged’ his High Commissioner to visit the captive Assange — the first time any Australian consular official had visited this Australian captive since his incarceration in the medieval prison for major violent criminals since his ordeal there began in 2019.

“Albanese, who had pledged during his campaign for PM to work to free Assange finally made it clear on April 5 that he was doing so.”

There’s a protest in D.C. at the Department of Justice from 4 to 6 p.m. ET on Tuesday. Contact: Ann Wilcox,