On 4 January 2021, the Extradition Hearings of Julian Assange concluded with a historic win for the Wikileaks founder. At the Central Criminal Court in London, a British judge denied the extradition of Assange to the United States on the grounds that it would be “oppressive” due to his mental health condition. The US government has since launched an appeal against this ruling, while Assange remains in Belmarsh maximum security prison awaiting further developments.
This judicial battle comes after years of arduous legal proceedings initiated by the US government against Assange, who risks being sentenced to up to 175 years in prison for publishing hundreds of thousands of confidential documents. He is accused of endangering national security and violating espionage laws, although many human rights organizations have pointed out that such charges would set a dangerous precedent for freedom of speech and press liberties.
The story behind this case is far more complex than what meets the eye and can only be fully understood by delving into its history. To gain a better perspective into this multi-faceted saga, we recommend watching Risk (2016), a documentary film by Laura Poitras which follows Assange’s journey from 2006 to 2011. Throughout its 90 minute run time, viewers will get an insight into how Wikileaks was born and why it became such an important tool for exposing corruption around the world. It provides key information about what happened at each step along his legal fight and gives us an intimate look into his life while living as a political refugee in Ecuador’s London embassy.
Risk offers an unbiased portrayal of both sides’ arguments surrounding this case and invites viewers to make their own judgement on it. Therefore, if you are looking to understand what is going on between Julian Assange and US authorities or simply want to learn more about one of today’s most controversial figures, we highly encourage you watch Risk right now!