30 September 2019 — Defend Wikileaks
Find the liveblog covering legal, political, and other updates in Julian Assange’s case and persecution here.
There have been no noticeable changes to Julian Assange’s prison conditions or treatment since his bail sentence ended on 22 September and his imprisonment on remand for the United States’ extradition request began the following day. He remains in effective solitary confinement within healthcare, spending 21-23 hours in his cell every day and with “controlled moves” every time guards move him from his cell to an appointment or outside to exercise, meaning the corridors are cleared and the prison goes on lockdown during his movement.
On Saturday, 28 September, supporters gathered outside Belmarsh as Eileen Chubb presented Assange with the 2019 Gavin MacFadyen Award, jointly given by Compassion in Care and the Whistler and accepted by Julian’s father John Shipton on Julian’s behalf. When Julian was moved from his cell through prison corridors to the exercise yard that day, he was able to see the protesters from afar, saying he saw hundreds of supporters outside. In his limited interactions with others, he was told that guards and other prisoners had heard heard the protest as well. But when Julian’s exercise time ended, prison guards took him back to his cell by a different route, one they’ve never used in the past for such moves, so that he couldn’t see the supporters as he walked.
On Sunday, 29 September, a man in the cell next door to Julian in Belmarsh’s health ward was apparently driven to desperation. The prisoner set fire to or in his own cell, sending smoke into the corridors and into the nearby cells. A day later, the inmate is back in the same cell.
Assange’s next administrative hearing is scheduled for 11 October 2019 at Westminster Magistrates’ Court.