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'Why Don't You Release Assange?': Mexican President Strikes Back at US Over Human Rights Report

© AP Photo / Alastair GrantWikileaks founder Julian Assange supporters hold placards as they gather outside Westminster Magistrates court In London, Wednesday, April 20, 2022.
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange supporters hold placards as they gather outside Westminster Magistrates court In London, Wednesday, April 20, 2022. - Sputnik International, 1920, 22.03.2023
Mexico’s president said the US government’s destruction of the Nord Stream pipelines and the ongoing political persecution of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange shows the US State Department’s accusations of human rights violations in Mexico “should not be taken seriously.”
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador dismissed a report by the US government on Tuesday accusing his administration of human rights violations as “lies.”
The State Department issued its annual report Monday on “Human Rights Practices.” The publication criticized the Lopez Obrador administration’s treatment of journalists and claimed that in Mexico, “impunity and extremely low rates of prosecution remained a problem for all crimes, including human rights abuses and corruption.”
In a stinging rebuke broadcast during his daily news conference, Lopez Obrador described the allegations as politically motivated, and said America’s obvious double standards mean the report “should not be taken seriously.”
“Let's see, human rights? Why don't you release Assange?” he asked, referring to the jailed WikiLeaks publisher who faces potential extradition to the US on espionage charges after revealing war crimes committed by American forces abroad. “If you are talking about journalism and freedom, why are you holding Assange?”
“If you talk about acts of violence, how is it that an award-winning United States journalist tells us that the United States government sabotaged the Russian-European gas pipeline?” the president continued.

Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Seymour Hersh recently published a bombshell exposé revealing US divers used C-4 charges to demolish the Nord Stream pipelines, which had been providing Germany with cheap Russian gas.

“Why is a cartel, or several cartels, allowed to operate in the United States, freely distributing the fentanyl that does so much harm to young people in that country?”
“With all due respect, that is their nature,” Lopez Obrador said of the US foreign policy elite, adding “they do not want to abandon the Monroe doctrine and… the so-called Manifest Destiny.”
The US officials behind the report, the president pointed out, “believe themselves to be the government of the world, and they only see the speck in the other's eye and not the error in their own.”
“But it's not worth getting angry over,” he explained, noting “that’s just that’s how they are.”
Mexico’s administration wasn’t the only Latin American government with choice words for the authors of the State Department report. Bolivia’s foreign ministry issued a statement condemning US allegations of human rights violations in the Andean nation as “interference in internal affairs,” criticizing the ‘unilateral’ report for failing to maintain objectivity.
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