20 Jun 2014
World famous whistle-blower, Julian Assange, marked the second anniversary of his political asylum inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London yesterday, June 19. Assange has been trapped inside the building for two years, since entering it after being ordered extradited to Sweden from the UK to answer questions regarding allegations of sexual misconduct.
Speaking to the Real News Network earlier this week, Assange’s lawyer, Michael Ratner reminded the public what the saga was all about. Julian Assange has not been charged with any crime, but has been warned by legal experts that going to Sweden could result in him being handed over to U.S. authorities as a consequence of the secrets his organisation, WikiLeaks exposed in relation to America’s “War on Terror”, such as the Afghan war logs and the “Collateral Murder” video that showed American soldiers gunning down unarmed Iraqi men, including Reuters journalists. Whistle-blower, Chelsea Manning, the young soldier that leaked the "Collatoral Murder" footage to WikiLeaks is already serving a 35-year prison sentence in America.
A vigil, attended by WikiLeaks staff, Assanges’s legal team and a large number of supporters, was held outside the embassy yesterday to mark Assange's second anniversary inside the embassy. Journalist, John Pilger, delivered a speech.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that WikiLeaks was to mark the occassion by releasing information on 50 countries.
Speaking to RT news yesterday, the organisation's spokesperson, Kristinn Hrafnsson, brought the public up to date with the latest work of WikiLeaks and its relevance for whistle-blowers today.
Meanwhile, British authorities have a surveillance team watching the Ecuadoran embassy around the clock and police officers stationed outside the building waiting to nab Assange should he step outside. The cost of surveillance has been estimated at £11,000 a day.
According to RT, the Ecuadorian ambassador isn’t ruling out the possibility that Assange may spend the rest of his life trapped inside the embassy, which by all accounts doesn't sound easy. The Huffington Post reports that his living quarters is a converted women's toilet.