Three European politicians have held a protest outside a British jail where press freedom activist Julian Assange is being held pending a trial on his extradition to the United States.
According to Press TV, Spanish Member of Parliament Ana Miranda joined German lawmakers Heike Hansel and Sevim Dagdelen in the vigil outside the Belmarsh Prison to demand British and European Union officials to prevent an extradition of Assange to the US where he could face a hefty prison sentence or even death for alleged attempts to access classified military information.
Assange was arrested on Thursday inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he had spent almost seven years trying to escape several charges brought against him in Sweden and in the US.
The arrest came after Ecuadorian government withdrew the asylum granted to Assange, accusing him of bad behavior and using the facility for espionage.
The arrest has sparked massive outrage among right activists and governments who believe the Australian whistleblower who co-founded the WikiLeaks website is becoming a victim of his activism for freedom of the press.
The three European lawmakers, who had been scheduled to meet Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy on Monday, went instead to Belmarsh Prison in southeast London to demand his release.
The Spanish Green member said extraditing Assange to the US could set “a dangerous precedent” for journalists worldwide” and would threaten “to criminalize journalism globally.”
Dagdelen, from Germany’s Die Linke, called on German and Spanish governments to grant asylum to the activist.
Reports said the three had requested to visit Assange in Belmarsh, a prison facility that Britain has normally used to jail people charged with high-profile national security offences.
Activists have protested Assange’s transfer to the notorious prison which is known as UK’s Guantanamo Bay, a reference to the US detention camp where suspects had been subject to abhorrent cases of torture over their alleged role in 9/11 attacks.