Assange 'binge-watched' suicide of ex-Bosnian Croat general
LONDON (AP) — Julian Assange relayed how he “binge-watched” the suicide of the former Bosnian Croat general in a U.N. courtroom three years ago, a doctor who visited the WikiLeaks founder on several occasions while he was in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London told an extradition hearing Thursday.
Dr. Sondra Crosby, associate professor of medicine at the Boston University School of Medicine, said she noted a visible deterioration in both his mental and physical state over her four visits from Oct. 2017 to the embassy where Assange was living. He had been granted asylum by Ecuador five years earlier over fears of extradition to the U.S. related to his WikiLeaks work.
Crosby told London’s Old Bailey criminal court that on a visit in February 2018, Assange had first described thoughts of suicide and how he was thinking about it “very deliberately" and that he had “binge-watched” the suicide a few months earlier of Slobodan Praljak at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague.
Seconds after an appeals judge confirmed his 20-year sentence for war crimes during the 1992-95 Bosnian war, Praljak proclaimed his innocence and then drank from a small bottle containing potassium cyanide. He collapsed in court and died in a Dutch hospital about two hours later.
The dramatic scene of the 72-year-old former commander of Bosnian Croat military forces lifting his trembling right hand to his mouth and drinking the liquid was streamed live on the court’s website.
She said Assange described how he “freeze-framed" and “analyzed” Praljak's face while he took his own life.
Assange's lawyers have argued this week that their client could very well try to kill himself if he is sent to the United States to face espionage charges, and have pointed to his deteriorating mental state during his...