Julian Assange – along with Professor Noam Chomsky and many others – has signed last week a petition in support of David Hicks and his legal struggle to retrieve the funds obtained from the sale of his book Guantanamo: My journey. The Australian Government has indeed threatened to restrain any fund under the Commonwealth Proceed of Crime Act.
Australian citizen David Hicks was arrested in 2001 in Afghanistan and sent out without any trial or even charges to the Guantanamo Bay where he was imprisoned and tortured during six years. In 2007 after a travesty of justice, where he was forced to plead guilty in order to go back to Australia, he was transferred for seven months to Adelaide’s Yatala Prison.
Arguing that a “person cannot profit from proceeds derived from the commercial exploitation of their criminal notoriety”, the Australian government is in reality imposing a unique form of censorship on a sensitive subject embarrassing both the Australian and the American government.
The Guantanamo files that have now been almost entirely released have taught us a lot on the treatment of prisoners and the awareness of the American government that most of the prisoners were innocent and perfectly unrelated to any terrorist organization. We are nevertheless more than ever in need of prisoners’ testimonies regarding a proved and established crime: the crime against humanity the Guantanamo Bay has been and remains.
More info on the Justice Campaign: http://thejusticecampaign.org/