UK Government Under Pressure to Release Julian Assange Over COVID-19 Fears
Wikileaks founder's poor health a major concern while held in Belmarsh prison in London
Pressure is mounting on the UK Government to release Julian Assange from prison due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The calls come amid fears the Wikileaks founder could become infected with the deadly COVID-19 while held in London's Belmarsh prison.
Assange's poor health is raising concerns about his vulnerability to the deadly Chinese virus.
The news comes as it's emerged that Assange has a secret family after fathering two children during his time in the Ecuadorian embassy in London.
The fiancé of Julian Assange has just revealed that she had two children with him and has issued a plea for him to be released from prison.
Assange's wife-to-be, Stella Moris, said there are now genuine fears for the health of the infamous whistleblower.
Assange has been held in Belmarsh prison since he was dragged out of the embassy a year ago.
He is currently awaiting an extradition hearing on behalf of the US, where he is wanted for questioning over the activities of Wikileaks.
He has been in poor health for months, but his friends say coronavirus is now spreading through Belmarsh, according to The Guardian.
One prisoner has died and a number of prison officers are off sick, suspected of having the virus, his friends have claimed.
In a statement to the courts supporting an application for bail, Moris reveals that she met Assange in 2011 when she was a legal researcher and was asked to look into Swedish legal theory and practice.
“Over time Julian and I developed a strong intellectual and emotional bond. He became my best friend and I become his,” she wrote.
The friendship developed, and despite the “extraordinary circumstances,” a close relationship began in 2015, she said.
The couple has two young children: Gabriel, three, and Max, one.
She said she has gone to great lengths to shield the children from the climate that surrounds Assange.
Moris added: “My close relationship with Julian has been the opposite of how he is viewed – of reserve, respect for each other and attempts to shield each other from some of the nightmares that have surrounded our lives together.”
She said she was making the statement now because their lives were “on the brink” and she feared Assange could die.
He is in isolation for 23 hours a day and all visits have stopped, she added.
The extradition hearing is fixed for 18 May after a judge at Westminster magistrates’ court rejected calls for an adjournment until September over what his legal team said were “insuperable” difficulties preparing his case because of the COVID-19 pandemic.