Edward Snowden slammed the arrest of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange on Thursday as a “dark moment for press freedom.”
The NSA whistleblower, who is under political asylum himself in Russia for leaking classified information from the agency in 2013, sent a series of tweets that were critical of Assange’s eviction from the Ecuadorian embassy in the UK.
“Images of Ecuador’s ambassador inviting the UK’s secret police into the embassy to drag a publisher of–like it or not–award-winning journalism out of the building are going to end up in the history books,” Snowden tweeted to his nearly 4 million followers. “Assange’s critics may cheer, but this is a dark moment for press freedom.”
The 35-year-old ex-Central Intelligence Agency contractor also weighed in on indictment charges that were unsealed Thursday charging Assange with trying to hack into Pentagon computers with former US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning.
“The weakness of the US charge against Assange is shocking,” Snowden said. “The allegation he tried (and failed?) to help crack a password during their world-famous reporting has been public for nearly a decade: it is the count Obama’s DOJ refused to charge, saying it endangered journalism.”