López Obrador and his offer of asylum to Julian Assange: political coherence in a time of double standards

Published:

7 en 2022 11:42 GMT

Last Monday, in his first morning conference, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador appeared flanked by Jeremy Corbyn, a British MP and leader of the Labor Party between 2015 and 2020. Corbyn, who is one of the main references of the European left, has strong ties with Mexico since his wife, attorney Laura Ivarez, is Mexican and for this reason maintains important ties that extend throughout Latin America. For example, Corbyn does not stop pointing out that Gabriel Boric’s victory in Chile a few days ago gave him joy and hope.

Due to Corbyn’s presence, the Mexican press asked López Obrador if his offer of asylum to Australian journalist Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks and who will serve three years in a London prison and ten years deprived of his liberty, counted the time he was in asylum at the Ecuadorian Embassy in the UK.

The United States government is close to prosecuting Julian Assange on charges of espionage and attacking national security, after a British judge accepted that the WikiLeaks leader could be extradited to the country. Before this the possibility of asylum for Assange in several countries has been reconsidered, as a measure to protect human rights and freedom of the press and information.

Mexico, honoring one of its best traditions in foreign policy, of providing protection to those persecuted for political or ideological reasons, has several times expressed its intention to grant asylum to Julian Assange, even in the face of possible controversy and confrontation that could bring America together. Union, which is primarily interested in prosecuting Australian journalists.

Javier Buenrostro, historian at the National Autonomous University of Mexico and McGill University.

Mexico, which honors one of its best traditions in foreign policy, of providing protection to those persecuted for political or ideological reasons, has on several occasions expressed its intention to grant asylum to Julian Assange, even in the face of the confrontations he must face. can take it with the United States.

López Obrador revealed that on December 23, 2020, he wrote to Donald Trump asking the United States government to release and pardon Julian Assange. In the letter, the Mexican president explained to his colleague that, in his opinion, Assange was a person driven by ideals and principles, and that for that fact he should be worthy of pity. Unfortunately, the letter was never answered.

Currently, according to Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, Mexico’s offer of asylum to Julian Assange continues and his lawyers are in touch, however, for procedural reasons, offer cannot be paid at this time. After ten years, Assange is still stuck in the legal situation that has kept him confined all this time, and one wonders if the United States will allow him to enjoy freedom in his host country.

Less than a month ago, Chinese artist Ai Weiwei posted a video on social media in which she runs on a treadmill. This is a campaign that has the hashtag #RunForOurRights (exercise our rights) and which aims not only to free Assange but also to raise awareness about defending press freedom and human rights.

Ai Weiwei visited Assange in London in October 2016, while the WikiLeaks founder was in asylum at the Embassy of Ecuador. Since then, the Australian activist’s health has declined drastically, even suffering a stroke a few months ago. So while the majority of people who believe in freedom of the press and information advocate that Assange doesn’t die in prison any time, the United States, a country that calls itself a “defender of freedom” is asking for 175 years in prison for someone. who defends citizens’ right to information. How much hypocrisy!

Javier Buenrostro, historian at the National Autonomous University of Mexico and McGill University.

Javier Buenrostro, historian at the National Autonomous University of Mexico and McGill University.

Viewed as it has in the past decade, it is more likely that we will see Assange’s extradition to the United States in the coming months than an asylum agreement in a country like Mexico.

Viewed as it has in the past decade, it is more likely that we will see Assange’s extradition to the United States in the coming months than an asylum agreement in a country like Mexico. If Assange dies in prison, either in England or the United States, his death should fall into the consciousness of the justice system of both countries and it would be yet another example of a false narrative about the freedoms of their people that official propaganda wants the world to believe, especially in the case of the United States.

Mexico, for its part, continues to enhance its traditions of asylum and protection in some of the most difficult and complex cases in international geography. If in the past century the Spanish Republicans, Jews and Communists or the thousands of Argentines, Chileans and Uruguayans who fled military dictatorships were accepted in our country, in the government of López Obrador Evo Morales has already been granted protection later on from the coup in Bolivia or , in this case , the helping hand continues for Assange and for press and information freedom.

If only the latter could materialize, it would honor all the international actors involved and put an end to the acts of injustice and arbitrariness that the United States wants to commit, which always dealing with double standards and hypocrisy in matters of freedom.

The statements and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not represent the views of RT.

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