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Tuesday June 18, 2024

WikiLeaks: Julian Assange secures bid to appeal US extradition

Legal action against WikiLeaks founder was initiated in 2010

By Web Desk
May 20, 2024
Julian Assange wins right to appeal against US extradition. — Reuters/File
Julian Assange wins right to appeal against US extradition. — Reuters/File

Julian Assange, the founder of the WikiLeaks, has been given the right to appeal his extradition order related to the United States over espionage charges.

The Australian publisher can challenge his removal from the UK to the US, as per London’s High court ruling on Monday, in a decision which extends his lengthy legal battle, according to Politico.

To provide “satisfactory assurances” the American government was given three weeks by the High Court. The same court also granted a temporary reprieve to Assange in March.

The assurances mark that he’d receive a fair trial; have his first amendment free speech rights protected; and will not face the death penalty.

However, any removal of Assange will be further delayed by the court’s ruling on Monday and also mean that his legal status continues to be disputed. On the issue of whether Assange would be allowed first amendment protections, the legal arguments continued to be focused on Monday.

For 17 counts of violating the US Espionage Act, obtaining secret military documents and conspiring to hack into a Pentagon computer network, Assange is wanted. He could face a sentence of up to 175 years in prison if he is convicted.

After hundreds of thousands of leaked documents about the Afghanistan and Iraq wars were published, legal actions against Assange were initiated in 2010.

To avoid extradition to Sweden on a separate investigation which was later dropped, Assange was seven years in London’s Ecuadorian embassy from 2012 to 2019.