Let’s not say yes to this request:
Julian Assange’s father has called on New Zealand to offer his son asylum after a UK judge blocked a US extradition attempt today. . .
The mixed ruling found the WikiLeaks founder’s precarious mental health would likely deteriorate further under the conditions of “near total isolation” he would face in a US prison.
Lawyers for the US government said they would appeal the decision, and the US Department of Justice said it would continue to seek Assange’s extradition.
After this development, Assange’s father John Shipton added his name to a letter calling for New Zealand to offer asylum to his son. . .
Even without Covid-19 dangers and restrictions are we under any obligation to let this man have asylum here?
The application to extradite him wasn’t turned down because of the weakness of the case against him but because his precarious mental health would likely deteriorate further under the conditions of “near total isolation” he would face in a US prison.
Could we, and should we accept him in that state and if we did could we give him the help he needs when our mental health system is overloaded?
Our borders are closed.
Should we make an exception for Assange when thousands of New Zealand citizens and permanent residents are having to wait weeks for places in managed isolation; families are in forced separation; people can’t get in to visit terminally ill family and friends or to attend funerals; and lots of other people with far stronger claims than Assange’s aren’t being permitted to come here?