Continued Detention of WikiLeaks Founder and Publisher Julian Assange
Several lawyers, politicians, journalists and academics consider Assange’s arrest in the United Kingdom and prosecution in the United States for publishing leaked documents of public interest an attack on press freedom and international law. After examining Assange in prison on 9 May 2019, UN special rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment Nils Melzer concluded: "In addition to physical ailments, Mr Assange showed all symptoms typical for prolonged exposure to psychological torture, including extreme stress, chronic anxiety and intense psychological trauma." In a letter sent on 29 October 2019 to the UK Government, Melzer wrote: "I found that the UK had contributed decisively to producing the observed medical symptoms, most notably through its participation, over the course of almost a decade, in Mr. Assange's arbitrary confinement, his judicial persecution, as well as his sustained and unrestrained public mobbing, intimidation and defamation. (...) British officials have contributed to Mr. Assange's psychological torture or ill-treatment, whether through perpetration, or through attempt, complicity or other forms of participation. (...) Recurring and serious violations of Mr. Assange's due process rights by UK authorities have rendered both his criminal conviction and sentencing for bail violation and the US extradition proceedings inherently arbitrary. (...) The detention regime currently imposed on Mr. Assange appears to be unnecessary, disproportionate, and discriminatory and to perpetuate his exposure to psychological torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment."
- EFJ statement: "The arbitrary detention of Julian Assange set a dangerous precedent for journalists"
- Open letter by Jean-Hervé Bradol and Rony Brauman (MSF) in Le Monde: "Nous appelons à la libération de Julian Assange et de Chelsea Manning, victimes de la vengeance d’Etats"
- Statement by Robert Mahoney (CPJ Deputy Executive Director): "For the sake of press freedom, Julian Assange must be defended"
- International journalist statement in defence of Julian Assange: "Speak Up for Assange"
- News report by The Guardian: "Julian Assange's health is so bad he 'could die in prison', say 60 doctors"
- Statement of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ): "Journalism is not a crime, Julian Assange must be released"
- Letter sent by the UN Special Rapporteur on torture to the UK Government