Rome votes to give Julian Assange honorary citizenship

Jessica Lionnel
Jessica Lionnel - [email protected]
Rome votes to give Julian Assange honorary citizenship
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange arrives at court in London in 2019. Photo: Daniel Leal/AFP

Rome on Tuesday became the first capital city in the world to approve honorary citizenship for imprisoned WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange,


Rome city councillors on Tuesday voted to give Assange honorary citizenship of the city, just weeks after the city of Naples did the same.

The resolution was passed with 22 out of 22 votes in favour, with 34 councillors present in the chamber.

Assange, an Australian national, is wanted in the US for 17 espionage charges over the release of classified US military records in 2010 and one conspiracy of computer intrusion after his arrest in 2018.

He is fighting extradition and is currently being held in Belmarsh Prison, London, where he has been for the last four years

Former Rome mayor Virginia Raggi, a member of the Five Star movement which is on opposition at the national level, said on social media on Tuesday she had already begun the process for formalising the citizenship.

She said Assange’s story “concerns all of us, our role as free and informed citizens and the future of our own democracy."


Raggi voted in favour alongside fellow M5S members Daniele Diaco, Linda Meleo, Antonio De Santis and Paolo Ferrari.

Honorary citizenship can be granted by any municipality to individuals who city councils deem to have a particular merit in the community.

Honorary citizenship is a local rather than national award and should not be confused with Italian citizenship for special merits, which is awarded by the state.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also