EU

2013-07-05 Sweden, UK block EU talks on US espionage

Sweden and the UK have blocked talks between Europe and the US on the surveillance scandal. The talks, due to begin Monday, will now be limited to the more abstract issues of privacy and PRISM. A second working group, to be set up to confront the US with the most recent developments, had the support of the entire EU save Sweden and the UK, who both used their veto to prevent its formation.

2013-07-04 NSA: Further EU Fallout

"Europeans are furious", reported Spiegel Online. "Revelations that the US intelligence service National Security Agency (NSA) targeted the European Union and several European countries with its far-reaching spying activities have led to angry reactions from several senior EU and German politicians."

2013-07-03 MasterCard breaks ranks in WikiLeaks blockade

It's now possible to donate to WikiLeaks with MasterCard and Visa.

WikiLeaks press release Wednesday July 3, 17:00 UTC

MasterCard has broken ranks in the US-linked banking blockade against WikiLeaks.

For almost three years, US financial giants VISA, MasterCard, PayPal, the Bank of America and Western Union have been engaged in an unlawful banking blockade against WikiLeaks. The blockade started in December 2010 in response to the start of WikiLeaks' publication of US diplomatic cables.

2013-01-17 Senator Ludlam to Foreign Minister Carr 14 January 2013

Senator the Hon Bob Carr
Minister for Foreign Affairs
PO Box 6100
Senate Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

14 January 2013

Dear Minister,

Please find below a series of statements made by members of the Swedish Executive and government officials on the Assange case.

2013-01-17 Senator Ludlam to Foreign Minister Carr 28 November 2012

Senator the Hon Bob Carr
Minister for Foreign Affairs
PO Box 6100
Senate Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600

28 November 2012

Dear Minister,

Please find below a series of links to evidence relating to the existence of a criminal grand jury investigation into Wikileaks.

2012-12-05 Julian Assange Presentation to EU Parliament on Corruption Revealed in Cablegate



Julian Assange was asked to present at the European Parliament S&D party seminar on Corruption in member states of the European Union. Bivol made a presentation in this seminar entitled Government Level Corruption and Ties to Organized Crime. Julian Assange spoke as part of this presentation on the wider corruption revealed in Cablegate, and legal cases that have used the cables as evidence.

2012-11-27 European Commission enabling blockade of WikiLeaks by US hard-right Lieberman/King, contrary to European Parliament's wishes

European Commission documents released today by WikiLeaks show that hard-right U.S. politicians were directly behind the extrajudicial banking blockade against WikiLeaks. In the heavily redacted documents, MasterCard Europe admits that Senator Joseph Lieberman and Congressman Peter T. King both "had conversations" with MasterCard in the United States. Lieberman, the chair of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, boasted of instigating Amazon's cutting of service to WikiLeaks - an action condemned by the Council of Europe's Committee of Ministers on 7 December 2011.

2012-11-26 WikiLeaks donations now tax deductible EU wide

Wau-Holland-Stiftung (WHS), named in memory of the German philosopher and net activist Wau Holland, has been collecting donations for WikiLeaks since 2009. In the immediate aftermath of WikiLeaks publication of the US diplomatic cables in 2010, not only did PayPal arbitarily shut down the WHS donations account, but the tax-exempt status of the Foundation was challenged as well.

This situation has now been rectified.

2012-11-20 European Parliament votes to protect WikiLeaks

In a landmark decision today the European Parliament initiated the drafting of legislation that would stop the arbitrary banking blockades against WikiLeaks and other organizations facing economic censorship. This is an important signal from the European lawmakers. It is a recognition of the seriousness of the precedents set in December 2010, still in force, when Visa, MasterCard, PayPal, Western Union and Bank of America launched a unilateral, extrajudicial banking blockade against donations to WikiLeaks.

2012-05-25 Will the European Arrest Warrant system set a dangerous precedent?

On 30 May 2012 the UK Supreme Court will announce the ruling in the case regarding the extradition to Sweden of Julian Assange, after Assange has spent 540 days under house arrest without charge. Following a European Arrest Warrant issued in December 2010 on allegations of sexual misconduct, Assange submitted himself for arrest. Though Assange has not been charged, Swedish prosecutors have sought extradition from the UK for questioning.

2012-04-21 #WikiLeaks news update: WikiLeaks lawyer on "inhibited" list; Bradley Manning support events; Other news




WikiLeaks has been financially blockaded without process for 504 days.
Julian Assange has been detained without charge for 501 days.
Bradley Manning has been imprisoned without trial for 698 days.
A secret Grand Jury has been active in the U.S. without transparency for 584 days.


WikiLeaks News:

  • WikiLeaks lawyer Jennifer Robinson was delayed at Heathrow Airport, being told she had been put on an "inhibited" list for apparently doing "something controversial." Australian Attorney-Genreal Nicola Roxon denied involvement with her placement on the list and said she is investigating the matter. Meanwhile, Australian citizens protested outside a law conference which both Roxon and Robinson were attending. Crikey has also put out a rather amusing comic about the incident. Watch an interview with Robinson on the matter below:

2011-08-19 The popular marches from #Madrid on their way to #Brussels #15M #europeanrevolution

The Popular March to Brussels that left the Puerta del Sol of Madrid on July 26th, is now at the Pyrenees. Until today, over one hundred people have decided to go to Brussels. The Marchers are, among other places, from Italy, Greece, Germany, France, Russia, USA, Cuba, Colombia, Mexico, Tunisia, Poland and England. Women and men of all ages are sharing this experience.

After twenty-three days on tour along towns and cities in Northern Spain, on Wednesday August 17th, early in the morning and from the city of Irun, the March will cross the border. Then, they will meet their counterparts in France at Baiona, where a warm welcome is prepared.

On Monday, August 8th, also the Mediterranean March to Brussels left the city of Barcelona in their journey to the Belgium capital. The Marchers are currently 21 and tomorrow it’s expected that several people will join up them. Besides, 12 participants have already confirmed their presence in the neighbor country, who will join up the March to accompany them to cross the border.

2011-03-04 Jennifer Robinson: Brief to Canberra meeting of MPs re Julian Assange

The following brief was submitted to the meeting outlined here by WL Central: On 2nd March 2011 at 9.15am a meeting was held, organised by Andrew Laming (Liberal Party MP Bowman Qld) at Parliament House Canberra to allow federal parliamentarians who wished to attend, some insights into the matters of Julian Assange facing extradition from the UK to Sweden, and facing (subject to that extradition process) a possible trial in Sweden and another possible extradition to the USA thereafter.

Among others, MPs Andrew Laming, Malcolm Turnbull, Doug Cameron and Sarah Hanson-Young were in attendance, along with parliamentary staff members.

Three speakers made themselves available for oral presentations and questions: Greg Barns, barrister from Tasmania; former Australian diplomat Tony Kevin and Peter Kemp solicitor from NSW, the latter two made written material available for the parliamentarians reprinted here with their permission.

The following brief was submitted to the meeting by Jennifer Robinson of the firm Finers Stephens Innocent. She is part of the legal team representing Julian Assange in the extradition proceedings requested by Sweden.

Jennifer Robinson's biography.

1. I am writing to you to provide a briefing for the meeting of members of Federal Parliament on Wednesday 2 March 2011 regarding the case against Julian Assange. This briefing note sets out the timeline of events and the human rights concerns that we have raised in relation to Julian's case in Sweden.

2011-03-03 Meeting on 2nd March in Parliament House Canberra with MPs re Julian Assange.

On 2nd March 2011 at 9.15am a meeting was held, organised by Andrew Laming (Liberal Party MP Bowman Qld) at Parliament House Canberra to allow federal parliamentarians who wished to attend, some insights into the matters of Julian Assange facing extradition from the UK to Sweden, and facing (subject to that extradition process) a possible trial in Sweden and another possible extradition to the USA thereafter.

Among others, MPs Andrew Laming, Malcolm Turnbull, Doug Cameron and Sarah Hanson-Young were in attendance, along with parliamentary staff members.

Three speakers made themselves available for oral presentations and questions: Greg Barns, barrister from Tasmania; former Australian diplomat Tony Kevin and Peter Kemp, solicitor from NSW. The latter two made written material available for the parliamentarians, reprinted below with their permission. Written material was also provided by Jennifer Robinson, UK counsel for the Julian Assange. That material is reprinted with permission here.

After short addresses by each of the three speakers, the meeting was opened for questions and summaries of each speaker in the proceedings appears below, after biographies.

2011-02-24 Former Guantanamo Detainee Denies Islamic Emirate Has Been Set Up in Eastern Libya [UPDATE:1]

ImageLibya’s deputy foreign minister, Khaled Khaim, has reportedly told European Union ambassadors in Tripoli that al-Qaeda has set up an Islamic emirate in Derna in Eastern Libya. He allegedly said a former Guantanamo Bay detainee is heading the emirate. Residents in Derna deny this has happened.

Residents in Derna deny this has happened. Al Jazeera posted this exclusive with the "man accused by the Libyan government of leading an Islamist emirate in Derna, Libya." Abdul Hakeem Al Hasadi said reports of an "emirate" were the result of pure propaganda and said the Gaddafi  is circulating this propaganda because he is a former political prisoner:

"I am, Abdul Hakeem Al Hasadi, a Libyan citizen and a former political prisoner. I would like to read the following statement in response to lies made by Dictator Gaddafi and his propaganda machine. I tell them that I am one of the participants in the revolution of Feb 17th along with the youth and people of Derna against the corrupt regime of Gaddafi. 


"Gaddafi is trying to divide the people of the nation. He claims that there is an Islamist Emirate in Derna and that I am its Emir. He is taking advantage from the fact that I am a former political prisoner."

Despite the fact that this may not be true, prepare for this latest report from a Libyan official to become a self-perpetuating thread in the story of the Libyan revolution. As WL Central waits for more information on whether this Islamic emirate has been established or not, let's consider what Saif al-Islam Gaddafi and Leader Muammar Gaddafi have said since the uprising began (and the various WikiLeaks cables from Libya which we have available).

2011-02-18 Australia appeals to Sweden over Assange

Paul Stephens, Australian ambassador to Sweden, last week formally requested assurances from Swedish Justice Minister Beatrice Ask concerning the treatment of Julian Assange under Swedish law.

In a letter written on the day of final arguments in Assange's extradition hearing last Friday,

Stephens explained that Assange "has been detained in his absence" by a Swedish court on suspicions of having committed "a criminal offence".

"I wish to convey the Australian Government's expectation that, should Mr. Assange be brought into Swedish jurisdiction, his case would proceed in accordance with due process and the provisions prescribed under Swedish law," the Australian ambassador.

He emphasised as well that he expected Assange's case to adhere to "applicable European and international laws, including relevant human rights norms."

2011-02-03 Marietje Schaake on the situation in Tunisia and Egypt

On February 3, 2011, Marietje Schaake addressed the EU parliament on the situation in the Mediterranean, in particular in Tunisia and Egypt. Schaake also called for an investigation into any corporations that might have facilitated the human rights abuses.

Video of her address:

2011-01-27 Budapest willing to make changes to media law in the face of international condemnation

Today, the Financial Times reported that the Hungarian government was willing to accommodate the legal issues raised last week by the EU commission. Mr Martonyi, Hungary's foreign minister said:

This issue of the Hungarian media law has become the subject of a pan-European political fight. Some political families felt that this is perhaps the topic they can use for their own political purposes. Brussels’ legal findings against the government’s media law could easily be overcome.

2011-01-24 Whistleblowing: Interview with EU lawyer Guido Strack

In an interview with the Frankfurter Rundschau today, Guido Strack, EU lawyer and former official of the EU commission at Luxembourg, outlines some of the pitfalls of whistleblowing.

Responding to the question "Stehen Mitarbeiter, die Rechtsbrüche anprangern, am Ende oft alleine da?"(Current employees who stand up against violations of the law often stand alone; why is that?), Strack says:

Viele geben irgendwann auf. Es ist eine enorme Drucksituation. Man findet gravierende Verstöße und weiß, dass das dem Chef nicht passen wird. Was macht man damit? Entweder man geht in die innere Kündigung, geht weg oder man gibt einen Hinweis auf die Missstände. Oft werden diese Menschen dann als zu widerspenstig angesehen und von der Organisation ausgesiebt.

Some give up at some point. There is tremendous pressure in this situation. One finds serious failures and violations of the law and knows that the boss will not address the issues. What does one do in that situation? Either you resign and have nothing to do with the problem or you report the violation. However, the people who report the violations will be regarded as being insubordinate and blacklisted from other organizations.)

Strack expands on the plight of whistleblowers in reply to the question:"Warum sind die Sanktionen gegen Whistleblower oft so heftig?"(Why are the legal consequences / punishments enacted against whistleblowers often so draconian?)

2011-01-22 Hungary faces fines and other administrative action over new media law

Reuters reported today on possible EU legal action against Hungary for its new media law passed in 2010 (reported here by WL Central). Hungary has two weeks to show that the new law complies with EU rules regarding free speech and media freedom, and with EU regulations on broadcasting. The report goes on to state:

The commission, which serves as the EU executive body, is concerned whether the new rules limit freedom of expression in Hungary by requiring all broadcasters to provide balanced coverage of news and to register with a state authority.

The full article can be read here.

Theme by Danetsoft and Danang Probo Sayekti inspired by Maksimer