Doctors For Assange Ratchet Up Pressure

Doctors for Assange have launched a new campaign to get proper medical treatment for the imprisoned WikiLeaks journalist by publishing a letter in Britain’s leading medical journal.


Doctors for Assange put out the following statement on Monday:

Ahead of Julian Assange’s US Extradition Hearing, 

Doctors’ Letter Published in The Lancet 

Authors demand an end to the torture & medical neglect of Julian Assange, 

intensifying pressure on Australian and UK governments.


Link to the letter:  

Ahead of Julian Assange’s upcoming extradition hearing on February 24, a letter by a group of doctors representing 117 physicians and psychologists from 18 nations calls for an end to the psychological torture and medical neglect of Julian Assange. Published in the pre-eminent medical journal The Lancet, the letter expresses concern over Julian Assange’s fitness for his legal proceedings while suffering the effects of ongoing psychological torture. 

A copy of the letter has been sent to the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Marise Payne. This follows the doctors’ earlier letter of December 16 2019, calling on Minister Payne to bring Julian Assange home to Australia for urgent medical care. A copy has also been sent to the UK Government, which the doctors accuse of violating Julian Assange’s human right to health. In a covering note to Marise Payne the doctors urged the Minister to “act decisively now” to remove Mr Assange from Belmarsh prison, before it is too late.

The Lancet letter affirms the alarm raised by UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Nils Melzer, and several specialists in the field, that Mr. Assange is in a dire state of health due to the effects of prolonged psychological torture in both the Ecuadorian embassy and Belmarsh Prison, where he has been arbitrarily detained according to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention. 

“Should Assange die in a UK prison, as the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture has warned”, the letter states, “he will have effectively been tortured to death. Much of that torture will have taken place in a prison medical ward, on doctors’ watch. The medical profession cannot afford to stand silently by, on the wrong side of torture and the wrong side of history, while such a travesty unfolds”.

The letter continues, “We condemn the torture of Assange. We condemn the denial of his fundamental right to appropriate healthcare. We condemn the violations of his right to doctor-patient confidentiality. Politics cannot be allowed to interfere with the right to health and the practice of medicine. In the experience of UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Nils Melzer, the scale of state interference is without precedent. 

“Since doctors first began assessing Mr. Assange in the Ecuadorian Embassy in 2015, expert medical opinion and doctors’ urgent recommendations have been consistently ignored.

“This politicisation of foundational medical principles is of grave concern to us, as it carries implications beyond the case of Julian Assange. Abuse by politically motivated medical neglect sets a dangerous precedent, ultimately undermining our profession’s impartiality, commitment to health for all, and obligation to do no harm. Our appeals are simple: we are calling upon governments to end the torture of Mr. Assange and ensure his access to the best available healthcare, before it is too late. Our request to others is this: please join us.”

7 comments for “Doctors For Assange Ratchet Up Pressure

  1. February 19, 2020 at 17:19

    Please save him. What a travesty this has been. I’m so sorry the U.S. has treated him so badly, and fear the U.K. will continue.

  2. February 18, 2020 at 18:14

    The British grey Govt. and the official Govt. has to keep it’s eye on the ball. Then two eyes on Julian Assange. You never know if he might tunnel his way out of the Belmarsh Holiday camp. Of course it looks like he may solve the problem for the Govt. by either losing his mind or his life due to his holiday (concentration) camp conditions. Looking at and reading of the condition Julian reminded me so much of Cardinal Minzenty and the Hungarian show trial in the 50’s.

  3. William H Warrick III MD
    February 18, 2020 at 12:52

    I am glad that finally they have made this strong message for Julian. It is stronger than the first one which I thought was timid and didn’t say a lot of things they should have. I have been saying since the British Police violated International Law by invading the Ecuadorean Embassy, violating Julian’s Asylum, and then Kidnapping him and putting him in Solitary Confinement, another International Law violation, holding him for a moot Probation offense, spying on him, telling all sorts of lies about him and the puppet Sweden for lying about a non-existent crime are just as bad because they knew about all of the above and did what they did anyway, that his extradition was illegal and they would have to let him go. I continue to believe that the Brits will have to let him go.

  4. dean 1000
    February 18, 2020 at 10:25

    Zoo animals and Nazi war criminals have received more appropriate medical care than Julian Assange. Government will prosecute people for abusing confined pets. Julian Assange can’t get appropriate medical care prior to trial. Is the government case against Assange so flimsy it fears it cannot convict a man in a normal state of health? Apparently so.

  5. geeyp
    February 18, 2020 at 01:57

    Inconsistent to no health care for Julian in a country with a National Health Service. If he collapses and dies, how will the government ever explain it? Not that many of them care one whit. I appreciate all of the doctors who took part in this. They certainly did the right thing putting it in The Lancet. There is a case study in this for the future, that is, if there is a future with the name Julian Assange allowed to exist in print. Otherwise, he will just survive as an anonymous example of psychological torture injuries on an unidentified individual with face not shown. A classic CIA case study.

  6. GMCasey
    February 17, 2020 at 23:33

    And so, a news outfit calling itself , The Guardian, has certainly proved Orwell right. Of course, that was after using Julian Assange ‘s news materials and then abandoning him. The Guardian must surely change its name to something more akin to selling people down the river , as the American expressions goes. The NY Times, and whatever, politicians and supposed journalists in Australia have also abandoned Julian Assange. Perhaps climate crisis is here now and-the lack of oxygen seems to have headed straight into the brains of the military, the spies and other elected officials in Sweden, and apparently Ecuador too, along with America , the UK and Australia. Torture has replace journalism and sanity has replaced thought. Five nations imploding at once—-and taking truth and justice with them at the same time. You nations have now done Orwell, so I suppose that Huxley ‘s Brave New World is next set to fall upon us all.

  7. Dick
    February 17, 2020 at 21:33

    Speaking from Australia, this entire Assange affair is the result of the Australian government bowing to US dictates. The Prime Minister, in particular, is placing political expediency before his professed Christian morals and ethics. I wonder what PM Morrison would answer to this question:

    In some future generation when all the lies and propaganda have rotted away leaving the Truth for all to see, who will this future generation most admire; you or Assange?

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