Press Release

PACE rapporteur visits Julian Assange in Belmarsh Prison, expresses deep concern for his well-being

May 14, 2024 — The rapporteur of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) on “The detention of Julian Assange and its chilling effects on human rights”, Sunna Ævarsdóttir (Iceland, SOC), has concluded a two-day fact-finding visit to the United Kingdom, during which she met Julian Assange in Belmarsh Prison and spoke to him in confidence.

Ms Ævarsdóttir has said:

“As noted in the motion underlying my mandate, Julian Assange’s harsh treatment risks deterring others who wish to report truthful information pertaining to armed conflicts. Whether or not he is extradited, his prosecution and lengthy detention already risk deterring other whistle-blowers and journalists from reporting on various transgressions of governments or powerful private parties.”

She has also conveyed a message from Mr Assange who welcomed Ms Ævarsdóttir’s work regarding his detention and its chilling effects on human rights in Europe, and praised Council of Europe as the most important guardian of human rights in Europe.