Scrutinising the government is very important in the fight to get Julian Assange freed and re-united with his loving family. Her Majesty’s opposition role in the House of Commons is exactly that! Please write to them in support of Julian Assange and do so often. They might not be your Constituency MPs and may not write back but you are making them and their Westminster staff aware of your concerns. With a change of leadership in the Labour party, a whole new bunch of people await to receive our concerns, let’s get to it!
Very grateful to the JADC member who contributed the list and the template letter!
Lyn Brown Shadow Secretary for Prisons and Probation
David Lammy, Shadow Justice Secretary
For media enquiries please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jonathan Ashworth, continues as Shadow Health Secretary.
Dr Rosena Allin-Khan, responsibility for mental health joins the shadow health team
Nick Thomas-Symonds MP Shadow Home Secretary.
Ellie Reeves, Shadow Solicitor General – role to scrutinise the actions of the Attorney General. (The AG legally advises government).
Keir Starmer, Leader of the Opposition
Here is a template letter you can use.
Congratulations on your appointment.
The Minister of Justice has responded to the demand for calls to release non violent prisoners to ease the overcrowding and expected accelerated infection of COVID-19 in prisons by announcing the release of non-violent prisoners. At last the UK is beginning to match the actions of Iran, where Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has been released to her parents in Tehran and is being considered for return to the UK to her family.
Normal, fair-minded people would imagine it was straightforward then: those with underlying health problems, who are at an exceedingly high risk of death (such as experienced by Julian Assange), will be released. But instead the legalistic workings are being exploited for ill: the insane world of Joseph Heller’s Catch 22 prevails:
First Julian Assange is refused emergency bail on 25/03/20. Then,‘The Ministry of Justice confirmed with AAP [Australian Associated Press] that Julian Assange, who is being held on remand in Belmarsh prison, will not be temporarily released because he’s not serving a custodial sentence and therefore not eligible’.
UK govt won’t release Assange amid virus https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6711654/uk-govt-wont-release-assange-amid-virus/
The net result is the Ministry of Justice is condemning an innocent man, to probable death, while convicted prisoners are released. This is understood by the average person. The world is scrutinising the actions of the judiciary in this country and notes that it is failing to act in a proportionate, reasonable and humane manner in this case.
Mr Assange’s lawyer has stated in court that he is vulnerable (to coronavirus) as he has a chronic lung condition and significant and debilitating mental health issues. Every time he uses the video link because he has to move across the prison, queue with others and use the same facilities as others clearly placing him at risk. Nor can his defence take instruction from their client in preparation of his case. It’ so obvious that the situation is absurd!
In this unprecedented context I remind you of Burke’s phrase, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men should do nothing.” You’re known for speaking out and taking up the good fight therefore I urge you do it again: maximise your position by demanding the temporary release of Julian Assange from Belmarsh prison while the COVID-19 is a risk alongside others who’re non-violent.
Yours with great concern,