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Sep 30, 2020 51 tweets 9 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Day 17: Julian Assange's resumed extradition hearing. We expect multiple witness statements will be read aloud this morning, and then Guantanamo Bay prison expert @GuantanamoAndy will be called in the afternoon session. #AssangeCase
Defense is reading from/summarizing a witness statement from war reporter Patrick Cockburn. He was in Kabul when the war logs were released and he says they confirmed civilian casualties he and other journalists suspected.
Cockburn's statement includes the importance of the war logs and Collateral Murder video to prove these incidents in the face of official denial.
As background, read Patrick Cockburn 'Julian Assange in Limbo'…
Cockburn in June 2020: The WikiLeaks cables collectively "convey [the war's] reality far better than even the most well-informed journalistic accounts"
Cockburn's witness statement calls WikiLeaks releases a great victory for freedom of expression in the face of government secrecy.
Now defense will read from a statement of a Ian Cobain, investigative journalist who was at The Guardian in 2010. His focus had been on uncovering British collusion with US rendition / mistreatment of detainees in the wars following 9/11
Cobain talks about the near-impossibility of uncovering these crimes -- it's always known that those with knowledge of them face fear of reprisal if they disclose. Cobain talking about how difficult it was to report on rendition before WikiLeaks documents were released
Cobain refers to danger to journalists for reporting on these abuses: 2005 plan to attack Al Jazeera office, threats of prosecution, threats in N. Ireland.

Media scrutiny is more important than ever, & leaks & whistleblowing remain a vital means for state crimes to be exposed.
Now reading from a statement from @SMaurizi, an Italian journalist with a background in mathematics who became interested in WikiLeaks' use of encryption. 2009 releases on Naples. Assange called WikiLeaks scientific journalism
Maurizi was working with L'espresso at the time of Collateral Murder. Was given access to the Afghan War Logs and was able to work on the documents. Then joined a new agreement on the State Dept. cables in Jan 2011 to provide local expertise on Italian documents
Maurizi's statement deals with the cables' public interest value. Talks about Sy Hersh's release of Abu Ghraib, was able to be dismissed ultimately because they could be framed as a few bad apples.
Talking about Italy prosecuting CIA/other US officials for extraordinary rendition. "Had it not been for the US diplomatic cables" these prosecutions would have been impossible.
Maurizi's statement also covers Assange/WikiLeaks' redaction of the State Dept cables. "I worked with WikiLeaks on appropriate redactions." The objective was to document state crimes, educate the public, and change government policy.
When names were identified, the local media partner would weigh in and redact with 12 X's so that even the number of characters in a name couldn't be used to identify someone.
Maurizi talks about lengths gone to to keep the documents protected/encrypted, far more strict than any other journalists she'd worked with. "Unprecedented", agrees with John Goetz calling it the "most careful" he'd seen. Even reporting on Italian mafia never reached these levels
Maurizi is surprised at how much Kromberg relies on David Leigh's book, says all other journalists knew not to share passwords (hers was different than his) and he appears not to have understood the agreement.
On the 2011 release of unredacted cables, Maurizi says Wikileaks could not have done something to prevent it and Assange himself was acutely concern with the impending release
Maurizi was present at Ellingham Hall when Assange called the State Department to warn them about the impending release of unredacted cables.
Defense will now read from a witness statement from Robert Boyle, US attorney, has sought to educate the public on use & misuse of grand juries
Boyle talks about Chelsea Manning's allocution statement and her belief that the release of these documents could educate the public and possibly change the course of the war
(Full text of Manning's statement at her court-martial:…)
"Although I stopped sending documents to WLO, no one associated with the WLO pressured me into giving more information. The decisions that I made to send documents and information to the WLO and the website were my own decisions, and I take full responsibility for my actions."
Boyle's statement talks about grand juries, known widely as little more than a rubber stamp, indicting or failing to indict as the prosecutor wants it to
Boyle talking about Manning refusing to testify in a grand jury (against WikiLeaks), believed it punishment for her releasing docs to WikiLeaks, was imprisoned in Alexandria and held in solitary confinement.
Boyle relays Manning: "The government is still intent on punishing me" despite imprisonment and commutation
Now defense reading a statement from Bridget Prince, Executive Director of One World Research (
Prince's statement discusses the jury pool that would be called in Assange's case, if extradited, in the Eastern District of Virginia -- large concentration of government agencies
Defense now moves on to the anonymous witnesses from the Embassy spying case. From yesterday's thread for background:
Witness 1 explaining what UC Global does, how it obtained a "flashy contract" with Las Vegas Sands, owned by Sheldon Adelson whose financial ties to Trump are well-known
UC Global director David Morales, after securing the contract, said the spying company would now be "playing in the big leagues" and had "moved over to the dark side"
Witness 1 recounting the spying operation on Assange in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. Morales said he was providing reports to a US intelligence agency, particular zeal in recording Assange's conversations with his lawyers
Witness 2 talking about spying operation as well, intention was to provide Embassy recordings to the US in real time. Witness refused because it was "manifestly illegal". Microphone was installed on the fire extinguisher. Especially wanted to record conversations with lawyers
Witness 2: Morales asked me to take a diaper from a baby in the Embassy to determine if Assange was the father. US was particularly interested
According to Morales, Americans had asked him to personally control and monitor everything surrounding a visit from a California politician to the Embassy
Assange lawyer Baltasar Garzon was followed, spied on, men in balaclavas entered his office
Fitzgerald will now read from statement of Noam Chomsky
Chomsky's statement will deal with whether the prosecution is political and that Assange is being prosecuted for his political opinions
Chomsky: Assange's words and actions should be understood in relation to the priorities of government. His actions exposed power to sunlight
Chomsky's statement provides an academic recounting of the role of information in the relationship between government and the governed -- all goes to whether this extradition is for a political offense
Recess now until 2:00pm London time for the parties to agree to more statements. #AssangeCase
Court back in session. Mark Summers for the defense updating on witness statements, nearing agreement on the statement of Jameel Jaffer
Defense requests a further half hour break to continue working on witness statement agreements. Court adjourned until 2:30pm London time.
Back in session. Defense & prosecution agreed on statements from Andy Worthington and Jameel Jaffer which can now be read from.
Mark Summers is now summarizing Worthington's statement, which deals with the Guantanamo Detainee Assessment Briefs (DABs)
Worthington: the GTMO revelations were of extremely high importance, still find them useful & important in 2020. Details the supposed intelligence used to justify the detainees' imprisonment. The majority of cases were based on testimony from fellow detainees who'd been tortured
See Worthington's reporting from 2011:

WikiLeaks Reveals Secret Guantánamo Files, Exposes Detention Policy as a Construct of Lies…
I'll post excerpts from Worthington's statement shortly. Next Summers will read from Jameel Jaffer's statement. Dobbin for the prosecution is telling the judge this overlaps with Shenkman's testimony, and similarly he would've been asked about case law he cites
Jameel Jaffer is the director of the @knightcolumbia First Amendment Institute.

Last year @JameelJaffer joined @jeremyscahill's podcast: 'Prosecuting Julian Assange for Espionage is a Coup Attempt Against the First Amendment'…
Jaffer also joined Courage's panel at the National Press Club: The Prosecution of Julian Assange and Its Impact on the Freedom of the Press…
Done with Jaffer's statement - I'll share excerpts in my report. Adjourned until tomorrow morning at 10:00am London time for potentially just one more statement. #AssangeCase

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More from @DefenseAssange

Jan 19, 2022
PRESS RELEASE: Thousands Sign Petition Supporting Assange
Led by @UNACPeace, more than 26 antiwar groups and 2,500 individual peace and justice advocates have cosponsored a statement calling for the immediate release of publisher Julian Assange and commending him for his contributions toward global peace.
Initial signers include antiwar activists @freedomrideblog, @ajamubaraka, @medeabenjamin, @davidcnswanson, @MsJodieEvans, and dozens of peace groups:
Read 8 tweets
Oct 28, 2021
Thread for #AssangeCase Appeal Day 2

Today is the defense’s turn, after yesterday lawyers for the U.S. attempted to undermine a renowned psychiatrist, admitted its prison assurances are “conditional,” and tried to downplay how harsh Assange’s US conditions would be.
Our full report on yesterday's proceedings is here:…
Here is our live-tweeted thread from yesterday's proceedings:
Read 43 tweets
Oct 27, 2021
Julian Assange's Extradition Appeal Hearing Coverage

Court has begun. Julian Assange doesn’t feel well and won’t be appearing by video link today. #FreeAssange
James Lewis QC discussing housekeeping items with the 2-judge panel, dividing argument time between the defense today and tomorrow.
Lewis outlining the US govt's lines of argument, including "assurances" that Assange won't be held in the most extreme & isolating prison conditions in the U.S. See more on the US's arguments here…

& on the "assurances" here…
Read 55 tweets
Aug 11, 2021
Court is scheduled to start in just over 10 minutes for Julian Assange's preliminary appeal hearing. Here's what today's proceedings will cover:…
Court is in session in US v Assange. Ed Fitzgerald arguing for the defense, Clair Dobbin for the prosecution. Julian appears to be participating from Belmarsh via remote video.
The High Court judge is explaining that today's hearing will cover the scope of the appeal in this case and will not determine the appeal decision itself.
Read 28 tweets
Jan 6, 2021
Two days after his extradition was denied, Julian Assange is back in court requesting bail. The US, appealing the ruling, wants him to remain in jail. We're covering the bail hearing now and will report here: #AssangeCase…
Prosecutor Clair Dobbin, acting for the US government, is arguing to keep Assange in bail. She said judge's ruling, which is based on Assange's mental health, "hangs by a single thread" and must be debated on appeal.
Dobbin is now telling the judge that the 2nd superseding indictment of Assange accuses him of helping Edward Snowden escape from the US after his NSA disclosures.
Read 33 tweets
Jan 4, 2021
#AssangeCase: We'll be live-tweeting the district court ruling in Julian Assange's extradition hearing today. Our report will be posted here:…
Here's an overview of the major arguments at issue and what expert witnesses had to say about them:…
Follow @DEAcampaign for live coverage outside the courtroom:
Read 55 tweets

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