On World Press Freedom Day 2019, WikiLeaks honours the more than 250 journalists incarcerated for doing their jobs: shining a light on the truth and protecting their sources. The Trump Administration's unprecedented indictment against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange only increases our resolve to defend press freedom.
"When publishers are persecuted for publishing, and journalists live in fear of their lives and livelihoods for holding the powerful to account, the threat to press freedom endangers us all," said Kristinn Hrafnsson, Editor-In-Chief of WikiLeaks.
"The Trump Administration’s prosecution of Julian Assange for publishing, and for seeking to protect the anonymity of his sources, is a dangerous attack on all publishers and on the First Amendment protections which are relied on in the US.
It is Julian Assange who is facing persecution today, but this an attack on every single journalist who has ever published material, and every publisher and broadcaster around the world who understands the public interest in doing so.
Julian Assange has received more than 15 internationally acclaimed awards for his journalism revealing war crimes, corruption and human rights abuses. He has been a member of the professional association of Australian media workers since 2007.
We acknowledge the extraordinary courage of whistleblowers like Chelsea Manning, without whom the ugly truth of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan would have remained shrouded.
On World Press Freedom Day, we remember our fallen and incarcerated colleagues, but we also consider the conditions under which quality journalism can flourish to inform, scrutinize, debate, and present information in the public interest," Hrafnsson concluded.