Rebecca Vincent Profile picture
Sep 10, 2020 11 tweets 5 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Good morning from Day 4 of Julian Assange’s US extradition hearing at the Old Bailey! Will share today’s updates on this thread.

#FreeAssange 1/
Waiting outside the public gallery entrance with activists @deepa_driver and Moritz Müller, who have been queuing since the early hours to gain access. So grateful for @rubio49158845, who kindly gave me his seat again 🙏 2/ Image
We *should* be getting in this morning, but have been told the public won’t be admitted until 11:30 - we’re not sure why. Only three of us will be allowed into the public gallery, which means they’re still saving spaces for the mysterious “VIPs” who have still yet to show up. 3/
This is apparently why we’re still waiting. It’s unclear whether we will be allowed in for the case management hearing, and what will happen next. And so we wait. 4/
We were allowed in only as court was breaking up, so did not quite make it into the public gallery. Court has been adjourned until Monday morning due to a Covid scare with one of the lawyers’ family members. It’s unclear why Assange was brought into court with this risk known. 5/
It’s been a frustrating week. @RSF_inter is the only NGO that’s managed to gain any access to this hearing, and that’s only been through sheer persistence and huge support from political observers and grassroots activists - and still we’ve only gotten in sporadically. 6/
So far in this extradition hearing, four witnesses have testified, for the defence. Their statements have been strong, focused on the political motivation and journalistic implications of Julian Assange’s prosecution - assessments which we share at @RSF_inter. 7/
For full details, it’s worth following journalists like @kgosztola, who have consistent access to proceedings via the video link, and reading the excellent daily reports from @Bridges4Media, which are also published at 8/
One frustration we have, besides the overarching access problem, is in the overflow courtroom we cannot see Julian Assange or assess his conditions. We’re left squinting at a small screen, and I can only properly follow as I have the lawyers’ voices memorised from February. 9/
This is not adequate to sufficiently scrutinise proceedings - but then, all of this is woefully insufficient to ensure respect for the principle of open justice & the right to a fair trial in a case of such tremendous public interest. The UK should - and could - do better. 10/
Here’s my round-up for @RSF_inter of proceedings so far - and that’s a wrap for this week. We’ll be back at court on Monday, and in the meantime continue to campaign for the US and UK to #FreeAssange! /11

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More from @rebecca_vincent

Apr 4
Today @RSF_inter was meant to be the first NGO to gain access to @wikileaks publisher Julian Assange in Belmarsh prison. This took months to secure. @cdeloire and I were confirmed to visit today at 9:15 am - but we were barred access by the Prison Governor at the last minute. 1/
We followed all of the prison’s procedures and rules. We arrived early with all documents. But we were told at reception that we would not be allowed in, as the Prison Governor had taken us off the list. The reason? They had “received intelligence” that we were journalists. 2/
No further discussion was possible. The Prison Governor would not come speak to us. We have written a formal complaint. Assange’s lawyers have written too. We will keep seeking access. We call on Belmarsh Prison to reverse this decision and respect Assange’s visitation rights. 3/
Read 9 tweets
Oct 15, 2022
Still absorbing the news from Malta - the significance cannot be overstated. 5 years, with so many of us campaigning, to start chipping away at impunity in a single case. This is an important step towards justice for Daphne Caruana Galizia - but what about the bigger picture? 🧵
Globally around 1,000 journalists have been killed in connection with their work over the past decade - the vast majority (around 9 out of 10 cases) committed with full or partial impunity. That’s why it stands out so much when justice is achieved in any case - it’s an anomaly.
This year alone, at @RSF_inter we have tracked killings of 45 journalists and 4 media workers around the world - and we’re only in October. That’s not to mention arbitrary detentions, which are rising year by year. At this moment, a staggering 524 journalists are unjustly jailed.
Read 15 tweets
Apr 20, 2022
Today the Westminster Magistrates’ Court will hold a short hearing in the extradition case against Julian Assange. The court is expected to give an order referring the matter back to the Home Office. I’ll be monitoring for @RSF_inter and will have updates on this thread. 1/
The hearing is listed for 10:15 am UK time. In a welcome change from the previous judge (Vanessa Baraitser), I’ve been granted remote access as an NGO observer. I’ll be following proceedings online and will be outside court afterwards to give a statement for @RSF_inter. 2/
Once the court issues the order, the defence has 4 weeks to make representations, then Home Secretary @pritipatel could approve/reject extradition at any time. @RSF_inter has called on her to protect journalism & press freedom by refusing extradition. She should #FreeAssange! 3/
Read 10 tweets
Jan 24, 2022
Back at the High Court this morning awaiting the decision on whether the judges will accept @wikileaks publisher Julian Assange’s right to appeal his extradition case to the Supreme Court. The hearing starts at 10:45. I’ll be monitoring for @RSF_inter and will have updates here. Image
Today’s decision will follow the High Court’s ruling of 10 December, overturning the district judge’s decision barring Assange’s extradition on mental health grounds. This court found in favour of the US’ diplomatic assurances re. Assange’s treatment.…
Good thread by @StellaMoris1 explaining the various possible scenarios we could see with today’s ruling.
Read 8 tweets
Jan 19, 2022
I’ll be back in court today to monitor the ongoing trial in the case of Arron Banks v @carolecadwalla. @RSF_inter and many other expert free expression organisations consider this vexatious case a clear example of SLAPP. I’ll have updates on this thread.…
Catch up on my live thread from Monday’s proceedings here:
.@johnsweeneyroar’s piece for @BylineTimes on the first two days of the trial is also very good:…
Read 52 tweets
Jan 18, 2022
I’ll be back at Kingston Crown Court this afternoon for @RSF_inter to monitor the ongoing trial in the case of Muhammad Gohir Khan, a British citizen accused of conspiring to murder exiled Pakistani blogger @AWGoraya. Catch up on my thread from last week here 👇
These proceedings were expected to last two weeks, and could possibly continue through 1 February. I’m monitoring in person when possible, and @RSF_inter is following closely even when we’re not present in court.
Journalists @MurtazaViews @SecKermani and @AtikaRehman are good to follow for close coverage. Here’s Murtaza’s piece on yesterday’s proceedings:…
Read 5 tweets

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