Julian Assange's lawyer has announced that they would be applying for bail on March 25 on the thick of the Coronavirus crisis that has gripped the globe. The lawyers are will cite that the WikiLeaks publisher is in imminent danger of getting infected while in prison.
WikiLeaks on Monday released a statement saying, "Julian Assange falls into a category of persons who should be released to mitigate the impact of COVID-19." Julian Assange's parents on March 11 raised concerns about their son contracting Coronavirus in prison citing "substandard healthcare" in prisons.
BREAKING: Assange’s lawyers have announced that they will be applying for bail at court this Wednesday, 25 March. They argue that he is in imminent danger from Coronavirus spreading through the prison population and should be released for his and other prisoners and staff safety. pic.twitter.com/pVjglPPi80— Don't Extradite Assange (@DEAcampaign) March 23, 2020
After the first case of coronavirus in a British inmate was confirmed on March 18, the demands to release WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange grew strong. The first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in a UK prisoner at Strangeways prison in Manchester which has created fear of chaos and widespread outbreak in the prisons which are usually overcrowded. The UK government has issued guidelines for prisons and other prescribed places of detention in the wake of coronavirus which has claimed 144 lives in Britain. As per the guidelines, any prisoner or detainee with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature should be placed in protective isolation for seven days.
The 48-year-old whistleblower currently imprisoned in Belmarsh is slapped with 18 charges in the United States including the Espionage Act, for conspiring to gain access into US military secrets between January and May 2010. If convicted, he will face up to 175 years in the US prison.
Wikileaks, an anti-secrecy organisation, was founded in 2006 as a platform for whistleblowers to release classified information anonymously. By 2015, Wikileaks became a portal to publish over 10 million documents, including top-secret documents. Ever since its launch in 2006, Wikileaks has published thousands of classified documents, disclosing the details from national security, war, politics to the film industry. In 2010, as per published files of WikiLeaks, Congress' Rahul Gandhi told the then US Ambassador at lunch that Hindu extremists groups post a greater threat to his country than the Muslim terrorists.