Ocasio-Cortez, Greene Agree on Prosecution of Assange

16 lawmakers call for administration to drop extradition efforts
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 11, 2023 2:50 PM CST
16 Members of Congress Push Biden on Assange
Julian Assange greets supporters in London in 2017.   (AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

Julian Assange has found bipartisan support in Congress, though his backers don't span their parties, the Hill reports. Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, and their frequent allies are among the 16 lawmakers, "as members of Congress deeply committed to the principles of free speech and freedom of the press," who signed a letter this week to President Biden calling on his administration to abandon its attempts to extradite and prosecute the WikiLeaks founder. Assange, who is jailed in London, is fighting extradition to face charges in the US in the UK's courts.

The charges Assange, an Australian, face involve the publication of leaked documents about the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, as well as diplomatic cables, per the Guardian. "It is the duty of journalists to seek out sources, including documentary evidence, in order to report to the public on the activities of the government," says the lawmakers' letter to Biden, which was sent Wednesday. "The United States must not pursue an unnecessary prosecution that risks criminalizing common journalistic practices and thus chilling the work of the free press." Other signees include Democratic Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Jamaal Bowman. Republicans who signed include Rep. Paul Gosar and Sen. Rand Paul. (More Julian Assange stories.)

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