Ecuador le otorgó asilo político, pero el Reino Unido se niega a concederle el salvoconducto para salir del país y quiere extraditarlo a Suecia, donde sería sometido a comparecer ante una fiscalía. 

 

Amy Goodman

Democracy Now

 

Oculto en una calle lateral de uno de los más refinados barrios londinenses, justo enfrente del enorme edificio de la tienda Harrods, se erige un edificio de apartamentos de la época victoriana donde se encuentra la Embajada de Ecuador. Julian Assange, el fundador y redactor responsable de WikiLeaks, el sitio web de divulgación de documentos filtrados por informantes, ingresó a la embajada el 19 de junio de 2012 y desde entonces no ha puesto un pie fuera.

Ecuador le otorgó asilo político, pero el Reino Unido se niega a concederle el salvoconducto para salir del país y quiere extraditarlo a Suecia, donde sería sometido a comparecer ante una fiscalía por denuncias de abuso sexual, a pesar de que nunca se presentaron acusaciones formales en su contra. Durante alrededor de tres años ha estado preso en la embajada, sin tener siquiera la posibilidad de ver la luz durante una hora al día, un derecho del que goza la mayoría de los prisioneros. Durante los dos años anteriores a su refugio en la embajada, Assange estuvo preso o bajo arresto domiciliario en Inglaterra, todo esto sin que se presentara una acusación en su contra. Cuando viajé a Londres esta semana para entrevistarlo en la embajada, Assange me reafirmó su convicción de que esta fase previa al juicio está siendo utilizada como un castigo y también como un elemento disuasorio. Sostuvo además que Suecia está actuando como sustituto de Estados Unidos, que desea verlo tras las rejas para impedir la labor de WikiLeaks.

No obstante, WikiLeaks continúa funcionando y sigue publicando información sin precedentes acerca de las condiciones posiblemente catastróficas en que se encuentran los submarinos de armas nucleares de Gran Bretaña, o capítulos enteros sobre el secreto y extremadamente polémico Acuerdo Estratégico Transpacífico de Asociación Económica (TPP, por sus siglas en inglés), entre otros. Fue desde la embajada de Ecuador en Londres que Assange ayudó al ex contratista de la Agencia de Seguridad Nacional Edward Snowden a escapar a Hong Kong tras haber publicado millones de documentos en los que se detallaban los programas de vigilancia del Gobierno de Estados Unidos. Cuando se dirigía de Hong Kong a América Latina, donde solicitaría asilo político, Snowden quedó varado en el aeropuerto de Moscú, luego de que Estados Unidos anulara su pasaporte, tras lo cual, Rusia le otorgó asilo político temporario.

Cuando salieron a la luz las denuncias de abuso sexual contra Assange a finales de 2010, el fundador de WikiLeaks se quedó en Estocolmo para ser interrogado por el fiscal, que luego retiraría los cargos. Assange obtuvo autorización para salir de Suecia. Cuando ya estaba en el Reino Unido, una segunda fiscal, Marianne Ny, volvió a presentar los cargos contra Assange. La fiscal ha tenido tiempo de interrogarlo en estos años, ya sea en persona en Londres o mediante videoconferencia. Sin embargo, insistió en que Assange fuera extraditado por la fuerza. Finalmente, un tribunal sueco la instó a que viajara a Londres. La fiscal ha señalado que se dirigirá allí para interrogarlo, pero hasta el momento no ha especificado cuándo.

A Julian Assange, sus abogados y sus seguidores les preocupa que, de ser extraditado, Suecia lo entregue a Estados Unidos, donde todo parecería indicar que está en marcha una investigación judicial secreta contra él y Wikileaks. “Julian habría ido a Suecia hace tiempo si Suecia le hubiera garantizado que no lo entregaría a Estados Unidos para ser enjuiciado por cargos de espionaje”, afirmó el abogado de Assange Michael Ratner, presidente emérito del Centro por los Derechos Constitucionales. Ratner explicó: “Suecia nunca ha estado dispuesto a brindar esa garantía, y sabemos que tiene muy mala reputación en cuanto a esto ya que es un país conocido por cumplir con los pedidos de Estados Unidos, ya sea el de enviar a algunas personas de Suecia a Egipto, para ser torturadas allí, o el de deportar a personas con asilo político, rompiendo su compromiso de no deportación”.

El Vicepresidente de Estados Unidos Joe Biden calificó a Assange de “terrorista de alta tecnología”, mientras que representantes electos y comentaristas políticos de ambos partidos han expresado públicamente que Assange debería ser asesinado. A este respecto Assange me dijo en la embajada: “La investigación de Estados Unidos contra WikiLeaks por denuncias penales es considerada la mayor investigación jamás realizada contra un medio de difusión. Es extraterritorial. Está sentando nuevos precedentes acerca de la capacidad del Gobierno de Estados Unidos de perseguir a los directores de cualquier medio de comunicación de Europa o del resto del mundo e intentar enjuiciarlos. Ellos dicen que los delitos cometidos son conspiración, conspiración para cometer espionaje, violación de la Ley de Abuso y Fraude Informático, piratería informática, apropiación indebida y robo de documentos del gobierno”. De ser confirmadas, las acusaciones de espionaje podrían llevar a Assange a ser condenado a pena de muerte. Suecia, al igual que la mayoría de los países europeos, no puede extraditar a una persona que considera que podría ser condenada a la pena capital.

Todos los posibles delitos por los que Assange es requerido en Suecia, excepto uno, prescribirán en agosto. La Corte Suprema sueca se negó a anular las órdenes de arresto presentadas en su contra a finales de 2010, en una decisión de 4 votos a favor y uno en contra. El magistrado Svante Johansson emitió el voto disidente y dijo que la detención “de facto” de Assange “viola el principio de proporcionalidad”. Sentado frente a mí en la sala de conferencias de la pequeña embajada que durante los últimos tres años ha sido su hogar, su refugio y su cárcel, Assange me dijo: “Como acusados no tenemos derechos debido a que aún no se ha abierto un proceso formal. No hay acusación, no hay juicio, no hay posibilidad de defenderse, ni siquiera el derecho de acceder a la documentación, porque no eres ni siquiera un acusado”. El tono pálido de la piel de Julian Assange tras haber pasado años sin ver la luz del sol combina con el color cano de su cabello. Sin embargo, su voluntad permanece inquebrantable y los documentos filtrados que inicialmente se propuso publicar cuando fundó WikiLeaks hace casi diez años siguen viendo la luz.

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