Julian Assange will run for the Australian Senate at the next Federal Election, according to his biological father, John Shipton.
TEN has the first-ever television interview with Assange’s father for its TV special tonight, presented by Hamish Macdonald.
Shipton tells Macdonald the party will be named ‘Julian Assange and WikiLeaks’ and he will run in either New South Wales or Victoria. He is strongly considering running in New South Wales to take on federal Minister for Foreign Affairs, Bob Carr.
“I think Julian shows considerable skill in putting together a diplomatic sentence and would be a good opponent for Mr Carr. Mr Carr, of course, is a skilled and accomplished politician so it would be an interesting fight,” says Shipton.
If he is successful, he will leave his post at WikiLeaks and return to Australia.
“WikiLeaks is a worldwide organisation and its work is worldwide… there are many people in WikiLeaks, not just Julian. Julian is the lightning rod, he takes all the heat while everyone else gets on with their work. As the demands of representing the people of NSW or Victoria required, of course, yes [he would return to Australia].”
When quizzed by Macdonald about running in Australia without claiming asylum, Shipton said: “All that you are required to have to nominate for the Senate or the House of Representatives is to be able to enrol. And to enrol, you need to be an Australian citizen, and not serving time, and to have been in Australia within in the last three years. Julian fulfils all of those.”
Julian Assange: A TEN News Special airs at 8pm tonight on TEN followed by Underground: The Julian Assange Story.