The Order of Journalists awards Julian Assange an honorary card

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While the expectation for the extradition sentence in the United States grows, Julian Assange has been awarded an honorary card by the Italian Order of Journalists.

There is a journalist, a member of the Italian Order, who faces up to 175 years in prison in the United States for espionage, for revealing classified documents relating to alleged war crimes committed by the US military. His name is Julian Assange.

The fate of Assange concerns us more closely

The founder of Wikileaks, an organization able to find secret documents and make them public, currently in prison in the United Kingdom pending the appeal sentence on extradition to the United States, has been awarded the ticket to honor of the Order of Journalists since president Carlo Bartolias a symbolic act of closeness and support to him, and to the freedom of the press, during a mixed ceremony – face-to-face and virtual – in Venice.

According to Bartoli, in fact, “defending Assange means defending the right of the press, freedom of information and the safety of whistleblowers. [segnalatori di illeciti, ndr]. This is why we have decided to enroll Julian Assange in the Order of Journalists. If an English court decides to extradite him to the US, in England – which was the cradle of the right of the press – the funeral of freedom of information will be celebrated ”.

The president of the Odg Carlo Bartoli delivers the honorary card for Assange © Order of Journalists

Since last Monday 5 September, therefore, Julian Assange has been a member of the Order of Italian Journalists. The president Carlo Bartoli with the secretary Paola Spadari, have officially handed over to Venice, the honorary card of the Australian journalist. The card was virtually handed over to Stefania Maurizi, his close collaborator connected online with the Casa degli Autori on Lido di Venezia, where the event was held, promoted by the Audiovisual Archive of the Labor and Democratic Movement and by the Articolo21 association, in collaboration with the National Federation of the Italian Press and the Order of journalists.

A 24-hour world marathon

And this is not the only demonstration in support of Assange organized by the Italian press: on the basis of an appeal launched at the end of July by Pressurean international press agency that defines itself for peace, nonviolence, humanism and non-discriminationthe marathon will be held on 15 October 24 ore per Julian Assangewhich will see at least 30 events take place in different parts of the world, with the support of social organizations and newspapers.

During the 24 hours, a live broadcast will connect all the initiatives on the planet, with explanatory videos and recorded interventions. “We aim for the greatest possible openness, diversity and creativity – explain the organizers of Pressenza – a small neighborhood event, a show, an event, a meeting between friends, a video, a radio interview, a statement. Everyone is welcome, no matter how “small” or “big”: we invite grassroots activists, journalists, show business personalities, artists, writers to participate according to their possibilities, abilities and tastes “.

The anguish of possible extradition

On 17 June, the then Minister of the Interior of the United Kingdom, Come on Patel (unconfirmed in Liz Truss’ new government team) authorized the extradition of Julian Assange to the US to face charges related to the espionage law. “This decision places Assange in great danger and sends a chilling message to journalists all over the world,” he said. Agnés Callamard, General Secretary of Amnesty International. “If the extradition continues, Assange will run the great risk of being placed in prolonged solitary confinement, in violation of the ban on ill-treatment and torture. The diplomatic assurances provided by the US that Assange will not be held in isolation cannot be taken seriously given the precedents, ”Callamard added. “We ask the UK not to extradite Assange and the US to quash the charges so that Assange is released.”

However, according to Amnesty it is likely that there will be further appeals against extradition, based on the violation of the right to freedom of expression. The latest report by Reporters Without Borders on press freedom, dating back to last May, highlighted how the opening to extradition of Julian Assange to the United States after more than two years of legal proceedings risked becoming “a dangerous precedent for journalism. and freedom of the press all over the world ”.

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