Generational divides revealed: Kiwi investment preferences explored in new report

  • : Banked NZ
  • : 26/01/2023
  •  Highlights

    • Younger generations are most likely to invest in shares, while Gen X say they are just as likely to invest in crypto. Term deposits are the top choice for Baby Boomers.
    • 52% of Kiwis think 2023 will be a better year for investing than 2022.
    • 87% think it’s important to invest in a socially responsible way.

    Auckland, New Zealand – There is a distinct difference in investment preferences across generations of Kiwis, shows a new report from Banked. The personal finance website surveyed 1,020 New Zealand adults about their inclinations and attitudes to investing.

    When asked what type of investment they were most likely to invest in, the top choice for Gen Z and Millennial Kiwis was shares (26.8% and 24.2%, respectively).

    Property was the second most common choice for Gen Z, with 19.3% of those aged 18 to 26 saying they were most likely to invest in that investment type.

    Along with shares, Gen X say they are just as likely to invest in cryptocurrency (both selected by 21.3% of respondents).

    Those of the Baby Boomer generation are much less interested in shares (13.3%) while more than a third (35.2%) say their top investment choice is a term deposit.

    “Our report shows a fascinating difference in the investment interests of Kiwis across age groups,” says Kevin McHugh, Head of Publishing for Banked.

    “The boom of micro-investing apps and the popularity of so-called ‘Reddit stocks’ has captured the imagination of younger generations and they’ve really embraced investing in shares and funds.

    “But as we move up the age groups there’s a declining interest in shares and a much greater attraction to lower-risk term deposits,” says McHugh.

    “We also see that while home ownership has become increasingly difficult in recent years, it hasn’t dented the aspirations of younger people to own property.”

    See the full report: https://www.banked.co.nz/nz-investor-report-2023

    Most Kiwis optimistic for 2023

    Banked’s report also shows that a majority of New Zealanders believe this year will be more fruitful for investors.

    Asked if they thought 2023 would be a better year for investing than 2022, more than half (52.2%) said yes. Only 17.1% said no, while 30.8% said they didn’t know.

    “Twenty twenty-two was a turbulent year for investors, with most investment types losing value. But most Kiwis are feeling more positive about 2023 and some may turn to investing as a way to counter the impact of inflation,” says McHugh.

    A nation of socially responsible investors

    The new report reveals the importance of environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing to New Zealanders.

    A huge 87.1% of respondents say it’s important to invest socially responsibly, and only 12.9% disagree.

    Gen Z feel the most strongly about the topic, with 90% saying it’s important. But the belief was uniform across all ages, with no age group dropping below 82%.

    For those that say they didn’t think socially responsible investing was important, a desire just to get the best return possible is the main reason for most (42.4%), while 32.6% say they thought it made no difference.

    ENDS

    About Banked

    Banked is a financial information and deals website that has the goal of helping New Zealanders make the best decisions on the products they need.

  • Survey-1-Q.-What-type-of-investment-are-you-most-likely-to-invest-in-excluding-KiwiSaver
  • : Kevin McHugh
  • : Head of Publishing
  • : kevin@banked.co.nz
  • : 02108837789
  • : https://www.banked.co.nz/
  • https://www.facebook.com/BankedNZ

New Zealand collaborators reveal innovative gut health product

  • : Zestt Wellness
  • : 23/01/2023
  • A Dunedin company, Zestt Wellness, have launched a new gut health product to help counter the damage caused to our digestive system from processed foods and additives.  One of the co-founders of Zestt, Dr Anna Campbell, says that damage to our gut health can be associated with the onset of chronic disease.

    Campbell, along with fellow founder, Darcy Schack, were driven to create a science-based gut health product that used New Zealand grown ingredients and innovation.

    These ingredients include yacon, which according to Campbell is “a superfood due to its amazing prebiotic properties.  Yacon provides a form of sugar that our body can’t digest but our gut bacteria can, this helps the growth of good bacteria and inhibits the growth of bad.  Clinical trials have shown that yacon can also reduce appetite and help with weight management”.  The Zestt team have partnered with Kerikeri organic yacon producer, Marcus van Boxel, and are excited about the availability and quality of yacon in New Zealand.

    Knowing the benefits of yacon and finding a local producer were only part of the equation.  Through a collaboration with Blenheim based company, Taylor Pass Honey and a Nelson based food scientist, Grant MacDonald, the team have found a way to turn the yacon syrup into a dried product – something that others have not been able to do.   A clever bit of local innovation has meant that they have been able to create the new ‘Thrive’ lozenge that has the correct pH and consistency and that also includes other New Zealand ingredients that are good for gut health, such as gold kiwifruit and probiotics from another Dunedin based company, BLIS Technologies.

    Creating a quality product from quality ingredients has its challenges.  According to Schack “the trick is to combine these ingredients, without losing bioactivity, so a lot of attention to detail and testing needs to happen along the way to insure none of the goodness is lost”.

    The inspiration for Zestt Wellness’ products arises from Schack’s personal health battles with Sarcoidosis, a little-known autoimmune disease, which affected his lung, heart and brain functions.  Zestt Wellness was established in 2019 and they released their first product EXhale, a lung health and immunity formulation, that year.

    Campbell is excited about the new product “launching a product that is based on quality ingredients, quality collaborations, innovation and a bit of Kiwi magic is something that we are proud of; best of all, we know this will make a difference to the health and well-being of some New Zealanders.”

    Ends

    424 words

    About Zestt Wellness

    in 2022, Zestt launched their product range in the USA and were named finalists in the Asia Pacific Nutra Ingredients Start Up Company award and winners of the New Zealand China Business Club Innovator award.  As a company, they tap into the rich New Zealand science and innovation ecosystem and partner with premium growers throughout the country to develop products with strong science behind them.

    To contact Zestt Wellness:

    Anna Campbell 027 4861418; anna@zesttwellness.com

    Darcy Schack 027 599 2255; darcy@zesttwellness.com

    www.zesttwellness.com

  • : Dr Anna Campbell
  • : CoFounder
  • : anna@zesttwellness.com
  • : 0274861418
  • : https://www.zesttwellness.com
  • https://www.facebook.com/Zesttwellness | https://www.linkedin.com/company/zesttwellness/

App to help consumers before they get to the Supermarket

  • : Sumfood Limited
  • :
  • As the cost of living crisis bites, a New Zealand company, Sumfood, has launched an app designed to help New Zealander’s save money at the supermarket.  The free app lets consumers know which supermarket has the cheapest price, per person, for groceries.

    Launched on 1 December, it is hoped that it will provide consumers with a little comfort at the checkout as the holiday season approaches.

    Dr Helen Darling of Sumfood believes that the kiwi’s want to help kiwi’s find the best place to shop and, at the same time, drive supermarkets towards fairer and more transparent pricing.  To do this, she said, will require innovative people to start using the app, as the amount of data builds, supermarkets will no longer be able to hide behind price differences.

    “Anecdotally, we know that where you live has an impact on what you pay at the supermarket – it’s time for some transparency”.  Price information is crowd-sourced from motivated consumers.

    The app was designed in response to increasing concerns of food price inconsistencies reported through the company’s food reporting tool.

    For the last two years the company has collected reports on food issues, with these ranging from concerns about food preparation or hygiene through to contaminants or foreign objects.  The company provides a service to consumers that gives them advice on what to do and who to contact.

    The new app, FoodSpies.com, uses crowd-sourced data to calculate the average price for a supermarket shop.    Shoppers can log on and find the average price, per person, for supermarkets in their region.  Data are sourced from shoppers who provide the cost of their shop and the pricing is continuously recalculated so that the most up-to-date information is available.

    Darling said that it’s an exciting time to be launching another tool to help consumers, adding that the idea came from her young, motivated team who are committed to making food systems safer and fairer.

  • : Helen Darling
  • : CEO
  • : helen.darling@sumfood.com
  • : 021479958
  • : https://www.foodspies.com/

Christmas crunch: 60% of Kiwis stressed about the cost of Christmas

  • : Banked NZ
  • : 30/11/2022
  • 30 November 2022, New Zealand

    Highlights

    • Kiwis to spend an average of $623 on gifts this year.
    • Women much more stressed about Christmas costs than men.
    • Almost two-thirds would pay more for a sustainable gift.

    The majority of Kiwis feel stressed about the cost of this year’s Christmas, reveals the latest research from personal finance information website Banked.

    A survey of 1,020 New Zealanders found that 60% of Kiwis describe themselves as either a ‘little stressed’ (46%) or ‘very stressed’ (14%) about the expenditure involved with this year’s festivities.

    Women are feeling under more pressure than men, with 70% reporting some level of stress, compared with 49% of men.

    Banked’s Christmas spending report found that Kiwis will spend an average of $623 on gifts this year. Women said they expect to spend $566 on average, while for men that figure climbs to $712.

    “With rocketing inflation and a cost of living crisis to contend with, lots of New Zealanders are really feeling the pinch this Christmas,” says Kevin McHugh, Head of Publishing at Banked.

    “Many will be worrying about their personal finances when they should be able to wind down and appreciate some well-earned time off with friends and loved ones.”

    Banked’s research also found that sustainability is an important consideration for Kiwis when buying gifts. Almost two-thirds (65%) say they would be willing to pay more for a gift if it was sustainable, such as one that involved zero waste or was made from recyclable materials.

    Younger people are even more interested in sustainable gift-giving, with 76% of those aged 18-24 (falling into the Gen Z age group) stating that they would be willing to pay more for a sustainable gift.

    Conversely, under half (49%) of those aged 55 and older say they would be willing to pay extra for a gift if it was sustainable.

    “Sustainability is a vital issue and it’s pleasing that so many Kiwis are willing to support it, even if it costs them a little extra at the checkout,” says McHugh.

    See Banked’s NZ Christmas Spending Report 2022.

    Top ways to save this Christmas

    Don’t feel obligated to spend beyond your means – “Christmas is an expensive time and many feel pressure to spend money that they don’t have,” says McHugh.

    “Don’t feel an obligation to buy gifts you’ll struggle to afford or take part in every costly social event. Put your wallet and your wellbeing first.”

    Secret Santa or group gifting – “Arranging a Secret Santa is a great way to cut costs. It can also be lots of fun and lets you focus on getting a great gift for one person.

    “Chipping in with others for a group gift is another excellent way to save, plus it makes it possible to purchase an otherwise unaffordable present,” says McHugh.

    Set a budget (and stick to it) – “It can be easy to overspend at Christmas. But by setting a budget and keeping track of your spending, you’ll make managing your finances over the festive period much easier,” advises McHugh.

    ENDS 

    About Banked

    Banked is a financial information and deals website that has the goal of helping New Zealanders make the best decisions on the products they need.

  • : Kevin McHugh
  • : Head of Publishing
  • : hello@banked.co.nz
  • : 642108881973
  • : https://banked.co.nz/

Media Giants Call on Biden to Drop Charges Against Assange

  • : Aotearoa 4 Assange
  • : 29/11/2022
  • Five of the world’s leading news outlets have sent an open letter to US President Joe Biden asking him to drop the charges against Australian Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.

    The letter states the charges against him set a ‘dangerous precedent’, relating to receiving and publishing classified material that revealed war crimes, torture, and environmental crimes. Assange is currently in a maximum security prison in London, and hundreds of doctors warn he could ‘die in jail in the coming months’.

    The New York Times used a photo of the Human Chain around British Parliament on October 8th, that New Zealander Matt Ó Branáin inspired. Ó Branáin welcomed the statement from the top Media brass saying ‘Joe Biden cannot run from this any longer. It would be a huge mistake to allow this disastrous prosecution to fall under his legacy. Free Speech is integral to the US identity and international respect.’

    Ó Branáin renewed calls for Jacinda Ardern to intervene diplomatically with Joe Biden and Rishi Sunak, saying ‘the case imperils not only Global Press Freedom, but New Zealand journalists working or travelling abroad, the integrity and safety of our troops, and the broader New Zealand public’s right to know. Staying silent on this is complicity, and will not age well, especially if he dies in prison. The public awareness of the significance of this case is growing every day.’

    The letter signed by five major media outlets states:

    ‘This indictment sets a dangerous precedent . . . Holding governments accountable is part of the core mission of a free press in a democracy. Obtaining and disclosing sensitive information when necessary in the public interest is a core part of the daily work of journalists. If that work is criminalised, our public discourse and our democracies are made significantly weaker. . . It is time for the U.S. government to end its prosecution of Julian Assange for publishing secrets.’

    Publishing is not a crime.

    The editors and publishers of:

    The New York Times
    The Guardian
    Le Monde
    DER SPIEGEL
    El Pais’

  • matt-chain
  • : Matt Ó Branáin
  • : National Co-ordinator of Aotearoa 4 Assange
  • : matt.o.branain@A4A.nz
  • : 4915231631792
  • : https://www.a4a.nz/
  • https://www.facebook.com/groups/a4assange | https://twitter.com/A4Assange | https://www.instagram.com/aotearoa4assange/ | https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7Lgvm4ob5_kUS6NIaEXwvg

Octana.io Raises $1.5M Pre-Seed Round to Accelerate the Adoption of Headless Content Management Systems Around the World

  • : Octana.io
  • : 10/11/2022 10:00
  • Auckland, New Zealand, November 10th 2022, Octana.io today announced their NZD $1.5m Pre-Seed capital raise led by local innovator, Hillfarrance Venture Capital.

    Octana, which was spawned in mid 2022 from award winning digital agency Apolinar, helps organisations adopt headless Content Management Systems, such as Contentful, by giving them a simple, quick and easy way to build, manage and maintain complex websites on top of any headless content management system.

    Headless platforms, like Contentful, are becoming increasingly popular as organisations are impacted by the maintenance, scalability and security issues associated with legacy monolithic platforms such as WordPress. However, without an app like Octana in their technology stack, they can easily run into complexity and content management issues that can prove very costly to solve, in part due to the constantly changing nature of website projects.

    Anna Dao, Octana’s Co-founder & Chief Executive Officer said: “This is obviously an important milestone for us and we are delighted to be partnering with Hillfarrance who share our vision and passion for the way websites are built and maintained. This funding will allow us to accelerate our growth and scale our team, creating more technology jobs within the Queenstown Lakes region.”

    Anna continued: “We have proven across Australasia that Octana can create huge value for organisations such as UP Education and Dubber, whose marketing teams now have the tools they need to manage their own headless websites without the help of developers. It’s now time to take Octana into marketplaces such as the Contentful App Marketplace in order to drive mass adoption of headless technologies across the world.”

    Rob Vickery, Founder and Managing Partner at Hillfarance said: “We’re delighted to be supporting the team at Octana as they set out to transform the way organisations use headless platforms. We have huge conviction in founders that come from the creative industries and the way in which they build businesses, grow teams and use innovative ways to change their customers’ lives for the better.”

    He continued: “I believe Octana is the right product at the right time supported by a team with a proven track record of delivery which is why we decided to fund the round in its entirety. We are deeply excited about the innovation coming out from the Queenstown Lakes region and we intend to build a base there in the first quarter of 2023.”

    Octana is offered as a stand-alone software app that can be hosted anywhere. It talks directly to the headless platform via APIs and gives organisations the ability to build and maintain beautiful websites quickly and easily using modern design systems. With Octana, marketing teams can create pages, change content, run campaigns and operate at scale without having to engage developers or agencies to support them, which is transforming the way they interact with the web and radically changing the economics of website management.

    About Octana

    Octana is a software app that gives organisations that have adopted headless content management systems the ability to build and maintain beautiful websites quickly and easily using modern design systems. With Octana, marketing teams can create pages, change content, run campaigns and operate at scale without having to engage developers or agencies to support them, which is transforming the way they interact with the web and radically changing the economics of website management.

    About Hillfarrance

    Hillfarrance Venture Capital is one of the leading early stage venture funds in New Zealand. Based in Auckland, Hillfarrance invests in audacious entrepreneurs who are solving the biggest challenges that matter in the worlds of artificial intelligence, gaming and content and climate change. The companies they invest in are predominantly focused on international expansion, especially into the US, and pushing the technological frontiers of what is possible in their sectors.

  • Anna Dao_founder
  • : Tim Nichols
  • : CMO
  • : tim@proxi.co.nz
  • : 0226424657
  • : https://octana.io

Lemon.io revealed the list of digital nomads’ safest and healthiest destinations: Australia, Germany, Hungary, New Zealand, Norway, and Portugal take

  • : Lemon.io
  • :
  • Lemon.io, a talent marketplace connecting venture-backed startups with vetted software developers, rolled out the list of the safest and healthiest countries for digital nomads

     Lemon.io analyzed data from two leading indices for health and safety — the Global Health Security (GHS) Index and Global Peace Index (GPI) — to determine the healthiest and safest countries with visa opportunities for digital nomads. Among the leading countries in the GHS Index, which measures every country’s preparedness to deal with public health emergencies like epidemics, are Australia, Germany, New Zealand, France, Spain, and others. As for the most peaceful countries in the world, the countries that topped the list include Iceland, New Zealand, Portugal, Czechia, and Hungary.

     Combining the two statistics, Lemon.io discovered the six countries that should be on any digital nomad’s definitive work destination list, both in terms of health and safety. These are:

    1. Australia
    2. Germany
    3. Hungary
    4. New Zealand
    5. Norway
    6. Portugal

    There are also visa-pending states that are likely to be added to the main list as soon as the digital nomad visa issuing starts. These are Italy, Latvia, and Indonesia.

      “Currently, there are nearly 40 countries that issue special visas for digital nomads. While many still measure their appeal based on traditional criteria such as cost of living, visa requirements, or infrastructure development, the past years have shown what truly matters: health and security. Having helped 800 remote developers around the world find employment, we at Lemon.io know firsthand how important it is to be comfortable working in different countries and under new circumstances,” — said Aleksandr Volodarsky, CEO of Lemon.io.   

    To help all the wanderlusts decide on their next destination, Lemon.io has prepared an informational starter pack for each destination option, which includes information on average monthly rent, estimated cost of living, eligibility, visa duration, visa cost, and the required monthly income to live comfortably in their desired location.

    See Lemon.io’s full analysis of the top countries in terms of safety and health here.



    ABOUT LEMON.IO

    Lemon.io is a talent marketplace of vetted software developers created with the big goal of connecting global venture-backed startups with world-class talent from emerging countries. The company is now on the way to providing jobs to a thousand engineers by the end of 2022.

  • : Hanna Zasukha
  • : Middle Content Outreach Specialist
  • : hzasukha@lemon.io
  • : 5012640636
  • : https://lemon.io

Alimetry announces US FDA Clearance for Gastric Alimetry – A Breakthrough Non-Invasive Wearable Device for Gut Diagnostics

  • : Alimetry Ltd
  • : 15/06/2022
  • Auckland, New Zealand – Alimetry, a medical device and digital healthcare company, today announced it has received US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance for Gastric Alimetry, a pioneering non-invasive medical device for aiding the diagnosis gastric disorders. Alimetry also announced today the launch of Alimetry Inc., a subsidiary based in Minneapolis, MN, that will market and distribute Gastric Alimetry in the United States.

    “Gastric Alimetry is an industry-first and genuine breakthrough in gut diagnostics.” said CEO Greg O’Grady, a Professor of Surgery and co-founder of Alimetry. “Alimetry’s unique technology harnesses the power of stretchable electronics, wearables, digital health, and cloud-based analytics to deliver a completely non- invasive solution. We are thrilled to announce FDA’s clearance of Gastric Alimetry, making this new test available to millions of Americans suffering from chronic gastric symptoms”.

    The Gastric Alimetry test is performed in a clinical setting. Recordings are taken before and after a meal, while patients simultaneously log their symptoms into the Gastric Alimetry App. The system performs a high-resolution recording of digestive patterns from the skin surface and delivers clinical reports via the cloud to inform the diagnosis of gastric diseases and support personalized therapy.

    The system is indicated for common stomach disorders including nausea and vomiting, gastroparesis, and functional dyspepsia, affecting over 8% of the world’s population, and costing billions of dollars in healthcare expenses.1,2 The test is also currently available in the United Kingdom and New Zealand.

    “Diagnosing gastric symptoms has been a deeply challenging clinical problem.” Dr. O’Grady said. “Existing tests are frequently unreliable and inconclusive, and patients may undergo months or even years of testing – often costly, invasive, or involving radiation – only to end in confusion and trial-and-error care. Gastric Alimetry is a game-changing tool that will bring improved clarity to field, enabling enhanced clinical outcomes, and safer, more accessible, and less-invasive care.”

    Gastric Alimetry is the result of a decade of world-leading science and innovation by an interdisciplinary team of clinicians, engineers, designers and scientists.
    “FDA clearance of Gastric Alimetry cements Alimetry’s path to leadership in gastrointestinal wearables and non-invasive diagnostics.” Dr. O’Grady said. “Alimetry has an outstanding pipeline of innovation and this is the first plank in a series of innovative new features and products that stand to transform care in disorders of gastrointestinal function”.

    Gastric Alimetry will be available commercially from July 2022.

    For more information on Gastric Alimetry visit www.alimetry.com

    About Alimetry

    Alimetry was spun-out of the University of Auckland in 2019 from a centre of excellence in digestive diseases. The company was founded by Professor Gregory O’Grady, a gastrointestinal surgeon, and Dr. Armen Gharibans, on the background of a decade of award-winning science.

    References

    1. Sperber AD, Bangdiwala SI, Drossman DA, Ghoshal UC, Simren M, Tack J, Whitehead WE, Dumitrascu DL, Fang X, Fukudo S, Kellow J. Worldwide prevalence and burden of functional gastrointestinal disorders, results of Rome Foundation global study. Gastroenterology. 2021 Jan 1;160(1):99-114.
    2. Lacy BE, Weiser KT, Kennedy AT, Crowell MD, Talley NJ. Functional dyspepsia: the economic impact to patients. Alimentary pharmacology & therapeutics. 2013 Jul;38(2):170-7.
  • Alimetry_System_Grey
  • : Hanie Yee
  • : Chief Operating Officer Alimetry Ltd
  • : hanie@alimetry.com
  • : 6421651226
  • : https://alimetry.com
  • https://nz.linkedin.com/company/alimetry-ltd | @alimetry_ltd

‘Kia kaha’: PM Ardern Requested to Join PM Albanese in His Calls to Bring Julian Assange Home

  • : Aotearoa 4 Assange
  • :
  • A group of lawyers, politicians, journalists and activists known as Aotearoa 4 Assange have written to PM Jacinda Ardern asking her to ‘stand strong’ with new Aussie PM Anthony Albanese, to ‘secure the freedom’ of Australian journalist Julian Assange. According to the letter Assange’s life is in peril and so are the ‘foundations of global democracy’.

    A4A spokesperson Matt Ó Branáin says ‘the election of Albanese is a seismic shift’ for the campaign to free Assange, who is currently imprisoned in the UK and fighting extradition to the US. Unlike his predecessor Scott Morrison, Albanese is a member of the Bring Julian Assange Home Parliamentary Group consisting of at least 30 MPs. Albanese has reportedly said ‘enough is enough…I can’t see what’s served by keeping [Assange] incarcerated’.

    Green MP and Human Rights lawyer Golriz Ghahraman tweeted ‘the threat to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange’s freedom is a threat to press freedom around the world.’

    Assange has been detained in ‘solitary confinement’ for the last 3 years in the UK and a UN Special Rapporteur has said he is being ‘psychologically tortured.’ A letter from hundreds of doctors says he is likely to die soon if not freed.

    The US charges ‘criminalise publishing leaked evidence of US state crimes’. International Human Rights groups, including Amnesty International and the Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights have said the case is a threat to global press freedom.

    The letter argues that there is ‘no chance of justice’ if he is extradited to the US as Assange’s ‘legally privileged consultations with his lawyers were spied on’ and the Espionage Act ‘prohibits any public interest defence’.

    Ó Branáin says ‘no one can credibly say justice has been seen in the UK extradition trial’. Amnesty International said the UK extradition trial was a ‘circus’. IBAHRI said ‘with this extradition trial, we are witnessing the serious undermining of due processes and the rule of law.’ Applications to monitor the trial from Amnesty International and Reporters Without Borders were declined. A4A’s letter says ‘this is a political case, and political intervention is required’.

    UN Special Rapproteur on Torture Nils Melzer says if Assange is extradited to the US he would be detained in ‘conditions that amount to torture’. Ghahraman states that although the UK Magistrate Court has now ordered extradition to be signed ‘the Home Sec must decline’. ‘The UK has an obligation to avoid extradition to a place where he faces ill treatment and torture’. A4A called on Ardern to ‘make representations’ to Ms Patel not to sign the extradition order.

    Rt. Hon Helen Clark said ‘you do wonder when the hatchet can be buried with Assange, and not buried in his head by the way?. . . ‘The real issue really is the activities they were exposing, not their actions of exposure.’

    Ó Branáin says ‘Australia and New Zealand should call on our allies the US and UK, to end this perilous persecution of a South Pacific journalist, and bring Julian home.’

  • Matt-O-Branain---A4A
  • : Matt Ó Branáin
  • : National Co-ordinator of Aotearoa 4 Assange
  • : matt.o.branain@a4a.nz
  • : 64204382863
  • : https://www.a4a.nz/
  • https://www.facebook.com/groups/a4assange | https://twitter.com/A4Assange | https://www.instagram.com/aotearoa4assange/ | https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7Lgvm4ob5_kUS6NIaEXwvg

Julian Assange Permitted to Marry in Belmarsh Prison

  • : Aotearoa 4 Assange
  • : 14/03/2022
  • Julian Assange Permitted to Marry in Belmarsh Prison

    Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has been given permission to marry his fiancée Stella Morris in the maximum security Belmarsh prison in London on March 23rd. Stella is a member of his legal team and mother of his two young children. The couple had to fight for their right to marry, even bringing legal action against the UK Government.

    Julian and Stella will be dressed by Vivienne Westwood. Julian will wear a kilt, honouring his Scottish ancestry. The couple are said to be very excited despite the severe restrictions imposed on the ceremony. They will be permitted only four guests and have been denied the request to marry in the prison’s Chapel, despite the fact that Julian regularly worships their.

    Stella told the Daily Mail that the right to marry is ‘written into law’ in the UK. ‘Of course, the circumstances are not ideal but I am relieved that reason has prevailed and I hope there will be no further interference with our marriage. Julian is not charged with any crime in this country, he is not serving a sentence, his imprisonment serves no purpose at all other than to prolong and make his suffering worse. I hope the injustice of this situation is swiftly brought to an end so that we can enjoy marriage outside of the walls of Belmarsh when he is freed.’

    Assange is being held in the notorious Belmarsh prison despite not being convicted of anything. He is awaiting the outcome of a US extradition request to face charges of ‘espionage’ for publishing evidence of war crimes and torture. Press freedom groups warn this unprecedented prosecution would criminalise fundamental journalistic practices.

    Assange recently suffered a minor stroke, and doctors warn this will likely lead to a fatal stroke if his conditions are not improved quickly. He is detained in solitary confinement 23 hours per day, which fits the definition of torture under international law. The Australian Government has been criticised for ‘sitting on their hands’ over one of their citizens. The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer said The Australian Government as ‘failed to support Julian Assange, and is complicit in his psychological torture.’

    Helen Clark recently said ‘You do wonder when the hatchet can be buried with Assange? And not buried in his head by the way. But at some point, could people move on? I do think that the information that’s been disclosed by whistle-blowers down through the ages has been very important in broader publics getting to know what is really going on behind the scenes. And should people pay this kind of price for that? I don’t think so… The real issue really is the activities they were exposing, not their actions of exposure.’

    Aoteroa 4 Assange is calling on the New Zealand Government to stand for Assange to protect human rights, the public’s right to know and peace.

  • stella rainbow 2
  • : https://twitter.com/i/status/1462562408749170689
  • : Matt Ó Branáin
  • : National Co-ordinator of Aotearoa 4 Assange
  • : matt.o.branain@A4A.nz
  • : 64204382863
  • : http://a4a.nz
  • https://www.facebook.com/groups/a4assange | https://twitter.com/A4Assange | https://www.instagram.com/aotearoa4assange/