7 Dec 2010

Greens say Australian govt must do more for Assange

6:01 am on 7 December 2010

The Australian Greens are calling on the government to do more to protect the rights of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

A global arrest warrant for the Australian was issued last week as the whistle-blowing website continued with its release of 250,000 American diplomatic cables.

Mr Assange's lawyer says his client fears for his life after some influential Americans called for his assassination.

The leader of the Greens, Bob Brown, says Mr Assange has been hung out to dry by the Australian government and deserves assistance and respect as an Australian citizen.

Attorney General Robert McClelland says nothing is stopping Mr Assange from coming home to Australia.

However, he has warned that the Australian government also has obligations to the US in the investigation of criminal matters.

Meanwhile, a lawyer for the founder of the WikiLeaks website says he is holding back secret material for release if anything happened to him.

He told the BBC that a rape case being prepared in Sweden against Mr Assange is politically motivated.