Julian Assange was too ill to attend the latest court hearing in his extradition case at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 1 June. The hearing which is described as procedural, heard from Julian’s barrister, Edward Fitzgerald QC that his client did not appear by video link because he was unwell. The court had previously heard that Mr Assange had received medical advice that using the prison facility could raise his risk of coronavirus infection.
On 23 January in an adjournment debate in the House of Commons on the UK-US Extradition Agreement, David Davies, the Conservative MP for Haltemprice and Howden opened as follows: “Since we agreed the UK-US extradition treaty in 2003, it has been abundantly clear that the British Government of the day struck a truly dreadful deal—asymmetric, sometimes ineffective and often unfair on British citizens. Countless examples down the years have shown that, from the NatWest three to Christopher Tappin, from Gary McKinnon to Anne Sacoolas, the person charged with causing the death by dangerous driving of Harry Dunn. We now risk yet another serious miscarriage of justice with the US extradition request for Dr Mike Lynch, a successful and entrepreneurial British businessmen…”
This article was written for the May newsletter of the Action on Climate Emergency (ACE) Settle and Area.
Many of us may have missed it, but Wednesday 22 April was Earth Day. Under normal circumstances climate change campaigners would have been holding demonstrations and other high profile events to mark the occasion. But we all know that we are not living ‘under normal circumstances’.
The point was well made by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in his message to mark the day when he acknowledged that all eyes were on the COVID-19 pandemic, which he described as “an unprecedented wake-up call.” He recognised the “immediate and dreadful” impact of the coronavirus urging everyone to “work together to save lives, ease suffering and lessen the shattering economic and social consequence”. At the same time, he observed that climate disruption was approaching “a point of no return” and a “deep emergency” that long predates the pandemic.