A CROWD of over 200 supporters of jailed WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange demonstrated outside the Old Bailey in central London yesterday prior to the hearing into his extradition to the US beginning.
Assange is charged by the US administration for publications exposing war crimes and human rights abuses, for which he faces a 175 years sentence.
Addressing the crowd outside the court Assange’s father, John Shipton, played a recording of one of the US drone strikes where pilots lied about the civilian victims being armed with AK-47 rifles.
Shipton said: ‘These lies about civilian weapons have been spread around the world, the malice and lies about Julian have been raining down like Niagara.
‘He is expected to read evidence of 100,000 pages on a computer with its keys glued down and USB port blocked.
‘Snatching Julian as they did shows the enfeeblement of the UK as an independent nation it’s “do as you are told”.’
Opening the rally, designer Vivienne Westwood said: ‘The world is in turmoil with a war economy. The government are playing football with Julian Assange and they keep moving the goalposts.
‘America is in turmoil with Trump supporting vigilantes.’
Kristinn Hrafnsson, WikiLeaks’ Editor-in-chief, said: ‘I am hesitant but hopeful. But hope is not enough, we have to fight.’
Outside the court earlier in the morning, ex-Ecuador consul to the UK, Fidel Narvaez, told News Line: ‘I helped Julian to get asylum in 2012 and what is happening now to him is shameful.
‘The government has been cynical all the way down and want to disregard human rights and treat small countries in an imperialist way.’