Published: Thu, June 13, 2019

Julian Assange one step closer to being extradited to US

Julian Assange one step closer to being extradited to US

In brief: The UK's Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, has signed a request for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to be extradited to the United States.

Assange faces a litany of charges in the US, including one count of conspiring with Chelsea Manning, the former intelligence analyst and whistleblower, to gain access to the US Pentagon network.

Julian Assange's extradition to the United States would be a deathblow for all truth seekers, George Galloway told RT, warning that anyone who fails to support Assange will one day share the same fate as the persecuted Wikileaks co-founder.

"But yesterday I signed the extradition order and certified it and that will be going in front of the courts tomorrow".

Assange's lawyer Jennifer Robinson told the ABC the signing of the order was a normal part of the process and the extradition challenge now begins.

It should be noted that according to a US-UK treaty, the extradition request must be made within 60 days of an arrest.

He insisted that Assange's supporters would "never give up" the fight to stop his extradition to the USA and secure his safe release from United Kingdom custody.

The U.S. will detail all charges against Assange on Friday, when it seeks his extradition in a London court.

Assange was evicted on April 11 from the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he had been holed up since 2012 after Ecuador granted him political asylum.

And an investigation has been reopened into an allegation of rape in Sweden, which Assange has always denied.

When Assange fled to the Ecuadorean embassy, he said he feared he would be ultimately extradited to the United States where he had caused anger by publishing hundreds of thousands of secret US diplomatic cables.

Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot, who presides over a number of high-profile Indian extradition requests including that of liquor baron Vijay Mallya and diamond merchant Nirav Modi, is due to hear the case at its next hearing on Friday.

The 18 charges against Assange reject his claim he was simply a publisher receiving leaked material, which would be protected under press freedom legislation.

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