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  • Demonstration in favor of the release of Julian Assange, Mexico, Sept. 21, 2020.

    Demonstration in favor of the release of Julian Assange, Mexico, Sept. 21, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @Assange_libre

Published 21 September 2020 (6 hours 30 minutes ago)
Opinion

Journalist Fairbanks did not dare to release the information she had for fear of reprisals. The U.S. Ambassador Grenell "had personally attempted to get me fired from my job in April 2019," she testified.

The U.S. journalist Cassandra Fairbanks told a British court on Monday that President Donald Trump's administration may have negotiated the expulsion of Julian Assange from the Ecuadorian embassy in London in April 2019.

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As part of the WikiLeaks founder's defense, the Gateway Pundit reporter testified before the Old Bailey criminal court in London. In her affidavit, she admitted to being a supporter of President Donald Trump, although she stated her commitment to press freedom.

Fairbanks explained that she received messages from a chat where there were people close to the Republican leader, such as his ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell and his adviser Arthur Schwartz, who was also a collaborator of Donald Trump Jr.

In October 2018, Schwartz told Fairbanks that the U.S. government "would enter" the Ecuadorian embassy in London "to arrest" Julian Assange, as he hinted that this Andean country's authorities would "let them do it."

“Schwartz informed me that in coordinating for Assange to be removed from the Embassy, Ambassador Grenell had don so on direct orders from the President. I believed this connected President Trump to those who had been reported as having secured the deal to arrest Assange,” the U.S. journalist wrote to the Court.

“I made this information known to an extremely limited number of people. I have had significant concerns, not least because of my previous experiences with Ambassador Grenell which gave me cause for concern: Grenell had personally attempted to get me fired from my job in April 2019,” Fairbanks recalled.

Prosecutor Joel Smith, who is acting on behalf of the U.S. Justice, rejected Fairbanks' testimony on the grounds that he could not know if she was telling the truth. However, the U.S. lawyer ruled out questioning her.

The United States demands Assange to try him for having allegedly conspired with former U.S. soldier Chelsea Manning in 2010 to get and publish secret information on his website.

In this second phase of the process against the Australian journalist, his defense will call witnesses to support the thesis that Washington's accusations are politically motivated.

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