Calamos Supports Greece
GreekReporter.comEuropeJulian Assange Wins Reprieve in Case Against Extradition to US

Julian Assange Wins Reprieve in Case Against Extradition to US

Julian Assange
The WikiLeaks founder has been battling for years against extradition to the US. Credit: Embassy of Ecuador in London, CC2/Flickr

The UK’s High Court gave reprieve to the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange by ruling that the US must give assurances that he will not face the death penalty if extradited.

According to the ruling on Tuesday, US authorities have three weeks to provide this before judges will consider dismissing Assange’s appeal against extradition to the US. UK judges also want assurances over whether Assange will be able to rely on free speech rights.

In a written judgment, judges said the concerns that had real prospects of success at appeal but which “may be capable of being addressed by assurances” were “that the applicant [Assange] is permitted to rely on the first amendment, that the applicant is not prejudiced at trial, including sentence, by reason of his nationality, that he is afforded the same first amendment protections as a United States citizen, and that the death penalty is not imposed.”

At a two-day hearing last month, which Assange was too unwell to attend, his lawyers argued that he faced a “flagrant denial of justice” if extradited to the US to face charges relating to the publication by Assange and WikiLeaks of thousands of classified and diplomatic documents they said had exposed torture, rendition, extrajudicial killings, and war crimes.

His wife, Stella Assange, expressed dismay at the judges’ decision. “What the courts have done has been to invite a political intervention from the United States…send a letter saying ‘its all OK,’” she said. “I find this astounding.”

“This case is a retribution,” she said. “It is a signal to all of you that if you expose the interests that are driving war they will come after you, [and] they will put you in prison and will try to kill you.

“The Biden administration should not issue assurances. They should drop this shameful case that should never have been brought.”

Julian Assange is left “in limbo”

The delay to the High Court’s ruling on Julian Assange’s extradition appeal leaves the WikiLeaks founder “in limbo,” says Amnesty International’s legal adviser.

Simon Crowther said that, instead of allowing this “protracted legal process to continue,” the US should drop all charges against Assange.

According to Crowther, “While the US has allegedly assured the UK that it will not violate Assange’s rights, we know from past cases that such ‘guarantees’ are deeply flawed—and the diplomatic assurances so far in the Assange case are riddled with loopholes.”

“In trying to imprison him, the US is sending an unambiguous warning to publishers and journalists everywhere that they too could be targeted and that it is not safe for them to receive and publish classified material—even if doing so is in the public interest,” Crowther added.

Assange, whose extradition proceedings have drawn international attention, faces prolonged solitary confinement and a potential prison term of up to 175 years if convicted.

The controversial figure behind WikiLeaks faces eighteen criminal counts in the US for his alleged role in unlawfully obtaining and disclosing classified documents related to national defense, including evidence exposing alleged war crimes.

Related: The CIA “Plotted to Kidnap and Assassinate” Julian Assange

See all the latest news from Greece and the world at Contact our newsroom to report an update or send your story, photos and videos. Follow GR on Google News and subscribe here to our daily email!

Related Posts