The health of imprisoned WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has deteriorated so drastically that his lawyer says it is not possible to conduct a normal conversation with him.
Swedish outlet Upsala Nya Tidning reports that Assange is so ill that he is now in the hospital wing of the prison.
“Wikileaks founder Julian Assange’s Swedish lawyer wants the arrest hearing on Monday in Uppsala to be postponed. According to the lawyer, who has now visited his client in British prison, Assange is admitted to the medical department and was unable to make a call,” the newspaper reports.
Assange is currently imprisoned at Belmarsh Prison in the United Kingdom and facing eighteen charges under the Espionage Act in the United States for his publication of the Iraq and Afghan War Logs. If extradited and convicted, he could be sentenced to up to 175 years in prison.`
The award-winning publisher is under investigation in Sweden for sex crimes, which he and many of his supporters believe is a setup to get him into the nation where he could be more easily extradited to the United States. A hearing in the case is scheduled for June 3 and Assange’s legal team had attempted to get it postponed until his health improved.
“One of the reasons is that Assange’s health situation on Friday was such that it was not possible to conduct a normal conversation with him,” Assange’s Swedish defense lawyer Per Samuelson told Reuters.
“I meant that it should be postponed until I had time to meet again and go through the issues in peace and quiet. I suggested no specific date and meant it should be postponed until everything was ready, but the district court has now decided that this won’t happen.”
Sweden had tried to drop the investigation in 2013, but was pressured to keep it open by the British government — further fueling speculation that it is a political hit job. A Crown Prosecution Service had emailed Swedish prosecutors telling them, “Don’t you dare get cold feet!!!”
Prior to his arrest, Assange spent nearly seven years in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, unable to receive proper medical treatment, despite the lack of sunshine and fresh air taking a toll on his system. Doctors who visited him there wrote an article for the Guardian pleading for him to be allowed to go to the hospital for treatment, headlining their account “We examined Julian Assange, and he badly needs care — but he can’t get it.”
The doctors wrote, “experience tells us that the prolonged uncertainty of indefinite detention inflicts profound psychological and physical trauma above and beyond the expected stressors of incarceration. These can include severe anxiety, pathological levels of stress, dissociation, depression, suicidal thoughts, post-traumatic stress disorder and chronic pain, among others.”
A source close to Assange confirmed the reports about his health to The Gateway Pundit.
“We have been watching the slow-motion assassination of Julian Assange. They have been choking him to death by tactical psyops, siege tactics, and wilful neglect as surely as if they placed a noose tied around his neck, not just in Belmarsh Prison but in the embassy as well. The only difference between his execution and someone on death row is the same as the difference between covert and overt warfare, which makes sense because the intelligence, judicial and military agencies who are carrying out his death sentence operate within the same power structure which carries out war. First came the smears (propaganda), then came the siege (sanctions), and they staged their coup (dragged him out of the embassy) and now they’ve got him in their clutches and they can do what they want behind closed doors. That’s how you kill a nation while still looking like a nice guy, and that’s how they’re killing Assange,” independent journalist Caitlin Johnstone wrote of his conditions.