Icelandic MP, Birgitta Jónsdóttir, is planning to travel to New York on the 5th April to exhibit still photographs from the controversial ‘Collateral Murder’ video which was supplied by Bradley Manning and released on Wikileaks three years ago.
She is making the journey even though she has been advised by the Icelandic government not to do so for fear of legal retribution from US authorities, despite assurances given in 2011 by the US ambassador to Iceland that she could travel freely in the US without fear of arrest or prosecution.
Jónsdóttir has been locked in a legal battle with the US Justice Department over its attempts to obtain her private information, including serving a subpoena to obtain her personal information from her Twitter feed as far back as 2009.
The MP was part of a group of WikiLeaks volunteers who gathered in Iceland in early 2010 to help Assange prepare the footage of the Apache attack. Jónsdóttir organized the volunteers, researched details of the footage so that it could be annotated and selected stills for distribution to the media.
Jónsdóttir told The Guardian newspaper that she wanted to visit the US so that she could speak out about the importance of Collateral Murder in a way that Manning himself could not. “I feel connected to Bradley Manning’s fate through that video,” she said “It’s deeply troubling to me that he is the only one suffering the consequences – none of the people responsible for the war crimes in the video have been held accountable.”
She told the Guardian that she had held back from visiting the US long enough. “I refuse to live in fear, and I don’t want to live in the shadows. I don’t think I’ve done anything illegal or that I’m an enemy of the US state, but if they think I’ve committed a crime, I want to know,” she said.