With Trump Presidency Winding Down, Push for Assange Pardon Ramps Up

During Mr. Trump’s presidency, Mr. Stryk, who is well connected in Trump administration circles, has developed a lucrative business representing foreign clients in precarious geopolitical situations.

He has worked for a jailed Saudi prince who had fallen out of favor with his country’s powerful de facto leader, as well as the administration of President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela, which the Trump administration considers illegitimate. Mr. Styrk also worked for Isabel dos Santos, the daughter of Angola’s former president, who is accused of embezzling millions of dollars from a state oil company she once headed, as well as the government of the former Congolese president Joseph Kabila, which had faced American sanctions for human rights abuses and corruption.

Mr. Stryk said that he was representing Blueprint for Free Speech to seek a pardon for Mr. Assange without pay because of his belief in free speech, and that he would continue pushing for the pardon in the Biden administration if Mr. Trump did not grant it.

“This is not a partisan issue,” Mr. Stryk said.

The contract, which he said he had disclosed to the Justice Department under the Foreign Agents Registration Act, calls for his company, Stryk Global Diplomacy, to “facilitate meetings and interactions with the president and the president-elect’s administrations” to “obtain a full pardon” for Mr. Assange.

Mr. Davis said Mr. Stryk had been chosen partly because of his entree into Mr. Trump’s administration, which the group sees as its best chance to secure a pardon.

Mr. Davis noted that Mr. Assange, 49, was indicted during Mr. Trump’s presidency. “We are unabashedly reaching out to the Republican Party on this issue in the final weeks to correct something before it’s too late, and before it become part of Trump’s legacy,” Mr. Davis said.

He said, “If Joe Biden is sympathetic, that’s well and good, and we certainly hope he is.” But, he added, “it’s a far simpler process for an outgoing president than an incoming president.”

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