Julian Should Not Have Spent a Single Day in Prison: Stella Assange

‘We hope journalists realize the danger this case presents,” she said, referring to the fact that Assange was forced to plead guilty to regain his freedom.

On Wednesday, Julian Assange arrived in Australia after reaching an agreement with the U.S. justice system. Stella Assange held a press conference on his behalf as her husband needed time to recover.

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“It took millions of people. It took people working behind the scenes, people protesting on the streets – for days and weeks and months and years, and we achieved it,” she said in a room at the East Hotel in Canberra, in front of over a hundred journalists.

“Julian wanted me to sincerely thank everyone. He wanted to be here today, but you have to understand what he has been through. He needs time, he needs to recuperate, and this is a process,” Stella added.

“I ask you to please give us the space and privacy to find our place and for our family to be a family before he can speak again when he chooses,” Assange’s wife added, noting that the Australian journalist needs “to get used to freedom again.”

Julian Assange “should not have spent even a day in prison,” Stella said, putting into context the significance of her husband’s release.

. @stellaassange addresses the world’s press as #JulianAssange returns home#AssangeFreed #JournalismIsNotACrime pic.twitter.com/zYd9xr5u5e

— Free Assange – #FreeAssange (@FreeAssangeNews) June 26, 2024

“Today we celebrate Julian’s freedom… But I also think this is a day where we hope journalists around the world realize the danger this case presents,” she said, implicitly referring to the fact that Assange was forced to plead guilty to regain his freedom.

Since this precedent could be used against other journalists, Stella called on people to seek a change in the current situation through a reform of the U.S. Espionage Act. She also pointed out that the Assange case represents an attack on journalism and the public’s right to know what their governments are doing.

“Julian will always defend human rights and always defend victims. He always has… He is a person of principles… And without fear,” Stella said, summarizing her husband’s situation.

WikiLeaks became globally famous in 2010 after leaking hundreds of thousands of classified documents that revealed the crimes committed by the United States in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and at Guantanamo Bay.

Initially detained in 2010 at the behest of Sweden for a now-dismissed abuse case, Julian Assange has since been under the threat of extradition to the United States, where he was accused of 18 offenses that could have sentenced him to 170 years in prison.

#FromTheSouth News Bits | The founder of the WikiLeaks platform, Julian Assange arrived in Australia after reaching a plea agreement with the United States justice system that put an end to more than a decade of persecution against the journalist. pic.twitter.com/fgYaq9L2vA

— teleSUR English (@telesurenglish) June 26, 2024