Judge threatens to remove Assange from extradition trial, says will continue in his absence if interruptions continue


08-09-20 06:25:00,

After shouting “nonsense” at a lawyer representing the US government, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was ordered by a UK judge to remain silent or be removed from his own trial.

Assange is currently facing extradition to the US over accusations he conspired to hack government computers and broke an espionage law over the release of confidential cables in 2010 and 2011.

On the second day of Assange’s London trial, which was already delayed from May due to the coronavirus pandemic, lawyer James Lewis, representing the US government, said at one point Assange was facing extradition and charges not over the leaking of confidential documents, but because of the publication of informants’ names, which in turn allegedly put their lives at risk. 

Witness Clive Stafford-Smith, an attorney and activist who founded the human rights organization Reprieve, disagreed with this point and the men argued back and forth.

“You cannot tell this court how this case will be prosecuted, you’re making things up,” Lewis said at one point.

“I can tell you how American cases are prosecuted,” Stafford-Smith shot back. 

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The exchange caused Assange to say aloud, “This is nonsense.” 

Judge Vanessa Baraitser then warned Assange he could be removed from the proceedings if he continued to have outbursts. 

“If you interrupt proceedings and disrupt a witness who is properly giving their evidence it is open to me to continue without you in your absence,” she said. “This is obviously not something I wish to do. I am, therefore, giving you a clear warning.”

There were several disagreements on Tuesday between Assange’s defense and the prosecution about the details of the charges Assange is facing. 

Stafford Smith said to Lewis, “I think you’re very wrong on the way cases are prosecuted in the US.” Lewis kept maintaining only cables with names of informants will surface in a US trial. But that doesn’t mean uncharged documents won’t factor into court proceedings. #Assange

— Kevin Gosztola (@kgosztola) September 8, 2020

Protesters around the world have expressed their disapproval of Assange’s charges and potential extradition,

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Colorado Town Threatens Up To A Year In Jail For People Who Don’t Wear Masks – Activist Post


10-07-20 07:29:00,

By John Vibes

The idea of wearing masks to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus is still very controversial in the United States, but some state and local governments are now threatening legal penalties for people who are walking around in public places without wearing a mask.

Earlier this week, the city of Englewood, Colorado, issued an emergency order which requires citizens to wear masks. If charged under this law, violators could face up to a year in prison, depending upon the circumstances of the situation and whether or not the suspect is a repeat offender.

The order was issued by Shawn Lewis of Englewood, and approved by the city council shortly after. The law will go to effect on Friday. All city residents over the age of five will be required to wear a mask in public that covers both their mouth and nose any time they enter a business or travel on public transportation.

Employees at these businesses and drivers for public transportation will also be required to wear masks. The first time someone is cited for not wearing a mask they will be fined $15, after that, it will move up to $25 for a second offense. However, there is a maximum penalty of $2,650 or up to 360 days in prison. People who are cited will have the option of pleading not guilty and requesting a trial.

This is one of many regions in Colorado that have passed laws requiring residents to wear face masks in public, but Englewood is threatening the most serious penalties. There is no statewide mandate for masks in Colorado, but many other states, including Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, and a growing list of other states have implemented mask mandates. For now, there are only a few select cities and counties in Colorado that are mandating masks.

Source: Truth Theory

John Vibes is an author and journalist who takes a special interest in the counter culture, and focuses solutions-oriented approaches to social problems. He is also a host of The Free Your Mind Conference and The Free Thought Project Podcast. Read More stories by John Vibes

Image Credit: Juan Daniel Carpio Ricote  &  

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Egypt threatens to intervene militarily in Libya


22-06-20 03:45:00,

On 21 June 2020, after reviewing his troops, President-Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sissi said in a televised statement that a military intervention in support of the only elected Libyan authorities, those of the Tobruk Parliament, would be legitimate.

He explicitly threatened the al-Sarraj government, which is recognized by the United Nations.

The al-Sarraj government is made up of Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda jihadists who facilitated NATO’s overthrow of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya in 2011.

In July 2013, after gigantic protests, Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sissi toppled President Mohammed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood allies, who had rigged the Egyptian presidential elections the previous year. He was later confirmed as president by a regular election, but with low voter turnout.

Should the al-Sarraj government invade eastern Libya, the Muslim Brotherhood will no doubt resume their terrorist operations in Egypt.

The United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia have come to the support of Egypt in its fight against the Muslim Brotherhood.

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Trump threatens to SHUT DOWN social media after spat with Twitter over mail-in voting criticism


27-05-20 06:17:00,

The US president has threatened to heavily regulate, or even shut down, social media platforms that “silence conservative voices” after Twitter marked his posts with a fact-check notice implying they contained misinformation.

“Republicans feel that Social Media Platforms totally silence conservative voices,” Donald Trump tweeted on Wednesday. “We will strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen. We saw what they attempted to do, and failed, in 2016. We can’t let a more sophisticated version of that happen again.”

….happen again. Just like we can’t let large scale Mail-In Ballots take root in our Country. It would be a free for all on cheating, forgery and the theft of Ballots. Whoever cheated the most would win. Likewise, Social Media. Clean up your act, NOW!!!!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 27, 2020

He went on to again decry voting by mail-in ballots, claiming that the measure would result in “a free for all on cheating, forgery and the theft of ballots” if used on a large scale.

The broadside was apparently Trump’s way to continue an ongoing feud with Twitter. The platform drew the ire of the president this week by marking some of his earlier posts about mail-in ballots with a notice suggesting that readers click and get facts about the practice.

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Trump accuses Twitter of election meddling after it bows to outrage mob & ‘fact-checks’ his tweets about mail-in ballots

Twitter has been adding such notices to tweets flagged as possibly containing falsities, so their appearance on Trump’s posts was cheered by many of his opponents. Critics of the president have long been pressuring his social media platform of choice to oust him for this or that transgression for years.

Their efforts were reinvigorated recently, with a hoax accusation that Trump had murdered a non-existent intern named Carolyn Gombell. It was started as part payback and part pressure campaign in response to Trump suggesting that MSNBC host Joe Scarborough had played a part in the death of Lori Klausutis, who worked for him as an intern during his stint in the US Congress.

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US Threatens Families Of Int’l Criminal Court Staff If They Try Americans For War Crimes


21-03-20 09:08:00,

Authored by Ben Norton via TheGrayZone.com,

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has threatened the family members of International Criminal Court staff, vowing that Washington will take punitive action against them if the court tries American soldiers for war crimes.

Pompeo also announced an intensification of unilateral US sanctions on Iran and Syria, which are illegal under international law, and which are undermining the countries’ attempts to contain the coronavirus pandemic.

In March 2019, the Pompeo State Department threatened to revoke or deny visas to any International Criminal Court (ICC) personnel investigating crimes committed by American forces.

A year later, on March 5, 2020, the ICC took a defiant step forward, officially approving an investigation into allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the US military and CIA in Afghanistan.

Pompeo responded by angrily condemning the court and its proceedings. His broadside was an apparent attempt at discrediting the institution, which the US government is not a party to.

In a subsequent State Department press briefing on March 17, Pompeo launched another tirade against the ICC, belittling it as a “so-called court,” a “nakedly political body,” and an “embarrassment.” Pompeo, who previously served as director of the CIA, took the denunciations a step further, threatening the family members of ICC staff.

BREAKING: In shocking attack on #ICC @secpompeo threatens collective punishment against named staff of the court and their FAMILIES for court’s ongoing investigation into #Afghanistan crimes that implicate US https://t.co/OsCTrC5YJs

— Sarah Leah Whitson (@sarahleah1) March 17, 2020

“We want to identify those responsible for this partisan investigation and their family members who may want to travel to the United States or engage in activity that’s inconsistent with making sure we protect Americans,” Pompeo said, according to the US State Department’s official transcript.

Sarah Leah Whitson, the managing director for research and policy at the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, drew attention to the “shocking attack” on Twitter. “This isn’t just unlawful collective punishment against family members;

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