SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A rally Monday afternoon in downtown Springfield called for the release of an Australian editor, publisher and activist who is being charged for hacking into a government computer years ago.
It was a small rally calling for the protection of freedom of the press and for the release of Julian Assange. More than a dozen people, some from the Latin America Solidarity Coalition of Western Massachusetts, rallied outside 1550 State Street calling on Senators Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey to makes statements and drop all charges against Assange and for his immediate release.
Assange is an Australian editor, publisher, and activist who founded WikiLeaks in 2006, a website intended to collect and share confidential information on an international scale.
People at the rally say freedom of speech and freedom of the press are the foundations of our democracy –and that Assange should be freed because he did nothing wrong.
“He’s being held in inhumane conditions that is harming his health. I think the charges are trumped up and I think he should be freed and the charges dropped.” Lois Gagnon, Latin America Solidarity Coalition of Western Massachusetts
In may 2019, Assange was sentenced to 50 weeks in prison for skipping bail back in 2012. On January 4 a British judge rejected the U.S. Justice Department’s request that Julian Assange be extradited from the United Kingdom to face trial in the United States.