“I have raised this personally with representatives of the United States government. My position is clear and has been made clear to the US administration that it is time that this matter be brought to a close. This is an Australian citizen.” – Prime Minister Albanese.
On November 30th in Parliament, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese answered a question from the Member for Kooyong, Dr Monique Ryan, regarding the Australian publisher and WikiLeaks co-founder, Julian Assange.
Below are quotes, attributable to members of Julian Assange’s family and the Assange Campaign Australian legal advisors, in response to Prime Minister Albanese’s statement.
John Shipton, father of Julian Assange:
“Prime Minister Albanese, in representations to the White House, stands firmly with citizens of Australia and the great newspapers of the world: The New York Time, The Guardian, Der Spiegel, Le Monde and El Pais.”
“Drop the charges. Return Julian home. We now get to see Australia’s standing in Washington, valued ally or not.”
Gabriel Shipton, brother of Julian Assange:
“Finally the Prime Minister has publicly called for this endless persecution of Australian publisher Julian Assange to be brought to an end.”
“Australians will be keenly watching to see how the U.S. reacts and if it will respect the calls of the Australian Public and Government to show mercy to Australian citizen Julian Assange.”
Greg Barns SC – Assange Campaign Legal Advisor:
“When an Australian Prime Minister raises concerns about an Australian citizen’s treatment by the U.S. it is a serious matter given the strength of the alliance between the two countries.”
“It is clear that Mr Albanese understands the injustice of the Assange case. Australians rightly expect their government to intervene in cases where Australians are detained overseas in unjust circumstances.”
Stephen Kenny, Assange Campaign Solicitor:
“It was reassuring to hear the words of the Prime Minister. However, words need to be backed by action, and we would hope that the Prime Minister’s representation has been heard in the United States. Action from the United States will determine if our Prime Minister has any influence in our relationship with the United States. For Julian’s sake, I sincerely hope he does.”
“In this case, enough has been more than enough. The imprisonment of Mr Assange has been a failure of justice, an abuse of process and should put a chill in the heart of every publisher who exposes the offences of a powerful nation. “
“The five newspapers, The Guardian, The New York Times, Le Monde, Der Spiegel and El País, who also published the documents from Chelsea Manning, issued a joint statement saying that “publishing is not a crime”. The newspapers called for the dropping of the espionage charges against Mr Assange. They have never been prosecuted for doing exactly the same as Mr Assange. Such a double standard should not be tolerated.”