On Monday 5 September 2022 Julian Assange has been a awarded the honorary card of the Order of Italian Journalists. President Carlo Bartoli with the secretary Paola Spadari Venice officially delivered the card to Stefania Maurizi, a close collaborator, with the Casa degli Autori on the Lido of Venice, where the event was held.
The occasion was promoted by the Audiovisual Archive of the Labor and Democratic Movement and by the Articolo21 association, in collaboration with the National Federation of the Italian Press and the Order of Journalists.
“Defending Assange means defending the right of the press, freedom of information and the safety of whistleblowers,” – said the president of the Order Carlo Bartoli showing the honorary card for Assange at the authors’ house in Venice.
“This is why we decided to enroll Julian Assange in the Order of Italian Journalists. If an English court decides to extradite him to the US, in England – which was the cradle of press freedom, will become the funeral of freedom of information.”
Present were Carlo Bartoli and Paola Spadari, president and secretary of the National Council of the Order of Journalists, together with the Venetian colleagues Gianluca Amadori, member of the executive and Maurizio Paglialunga, coordinator of the CTS, with them also Giuliano Gargano President of the Veneto regional order . The meeting was also attended by Giorgio Gosetti, general delegate of the Authors’ Days; Giuseppe Giulietti, President of the Fnsi; Vincenzo Vita, president of Aamod. Contributions also include those of Monica Andolfatto, secretary of the Veneto Journalists Union; Tina Marinari, campaign coordinator of Amnesty International Italia; Manuela Piovano, vice president of the National Association of Authors and of the actress Ottavia Piccolo.
Originally published in Ordine dei Giornalisti.
The same time Assange was awarded honorary citizenship of Pescara in Italy. For the proposal of the councilors of the 5 Star Movement Erika Alessandrini, Massimo Di Renzo and Paolo Sola, the municipal council of the Adriatic city approved the motion with recognition proposed to the Wikileaks founder.
“Pescara joins the chorus of those who, all over the world, reiterate the defense of the right to freedom of the press which Julian Assange represents,” declared the councilor after the vote in the civic assembly. The recognition of honorary citizenship has a symbolic value but, the three councilors underline to “keep attention on the matter” and signify how “even the Pescara community feels it has to give its own contribution in defense of ideals such as the right to information and transparency”.
“The journalist, activist and founder of the WikiLeaks rose to the headlines in the international news in 2010 for revealing US war crimes, abuses and violence of the American armed forces during the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. The arrest by the British police and the extradition request by the United States where he faces up to 175 years in prison for publication of information in the public interest is a capital punishment. An event that sparked a great international protest and raised numerous appeals for the release of the journalist from public opinion and various human rights organizations.”
“For his reporting activity, Julian Assange has received, over the years, numerous commendations and awards, as well as having been repeatedly proposed for the Nobel Peace Prize for revealing the horrors of Western wars.”
Originally published in Pressenza.
Earlier Assange was also awarded honorary citizenship by the City Council of Lucera, in the province of Foggia. Lucera is the first municipality in Italy to officially confer citizenship to Julian Assange.