Saturday, February 6, 2016

How Orwellian : Julian Assange's "confinement"

The PR statement from the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention
The Working Group considered that Mr. Assange has been subjected to different forms of deprivation of liberty: initial detention in Wandsworth prison which was followed by house arrest and his confinement at the Ecuadorian Embassy.  Having concluded that there was a continuous deprivation of liberty, the Working Group also found that the detention was arbitrary because he was held in isolation during the first stage of detention and because of the lack of diligence by the Swedish Prosecutor in its investigations, which resulted in the lengthy detention of Mr. Assange.  The Working Group found that this detention is in violation of Articles 9 and 10 of the UDHR and Articles 7, 9(1), 9(3), 9(4), 10 and 14 of the ICCPR, and falls within category III as defined in its Methods of Work
Getting arrested while having a warrant filed is being arbitrarily detained? Then he was let out on bail with terms requiring he have a permanent address is not the same as house arrest and not the same as being arbitrarily detained.  The euphemism "his confinement at the Ecuadorian Embassy" to describe the claim of arbitrary detention elides that he confined himself there. Pity all the fugitives from justice who can't move freely without fear of being arrested.

The full report including the dissent is here (.docx file)

Who is the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention?
Members of the Working GroupMr. Seong-Phil Hong
Republic of Korea, since 2014
Mr. José Guevara
(Mexico), since 2014
(First Vice-Chair)
Mr. Sètondji Adjovi
(Benin), since 2014
(Second Vice-Chair)
Ms. Leigh Toomey
(Australia), since 2015
Mr. Vladimir Tochilovsky
(Ukraine), since 2010
A five member group with the majority of the group having a variation of the title "chair." Presumably, the other two have to stand.

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