Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Assange Friend Names 'Sexual Assault Victim' on Live Television

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Assange Friend Names 'Sexual Assault Victim' on Live Television

Article excerpt

Byline: Kiran Randhawa

ONE of Julian Assange's key supporters came under fire today after naming on live television a woman who has accused the WikiLeaks founder of sexual assault.

Craig Murray, former British ambassador to Uzbekistan, was attacked for showing "little respect for judicial process" by naming one of two women who claim they were assaulted in Sweden.

If the alleged assault had taken place in Britain, it would have been illegal to broadcast the woman's name.

Mr Murray, who blew the whistle on the CIA's "extraordinary rendition" of terrorism suspects, today refused to apologise for his outburst on BBC2's Newsnight. On his blog, he wrote: "The furore that I 'revealed' her name is a pathetic spasm of false indignation by Establishment supporters."

Another Assange supporter, Respect MP George Galloway, earlier suggested in a video blog that the accusations against the Australian amounted to bad "sexual etiquette" rather than rape.

Financier Ben Goldsmith today tweeted: "I'm with @georgegalloway on Assange. Trumped up Swedish 'rape' charges are a ruse to get him to an American jail. Scary stuff."

The 31-year-old brother of MP Zac Goldsmith and Jemima Khan later appeared to have deleted the tweet.

Today Mr Assange's supporters faced criticism on Twitter. One tweeter wrote: "With friends like Craig Murray and George Galloway, Julian Assange needs to find some enemies. …

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