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Julian Assange Granted Leave To Appeal Extradition To The US

Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder, has been granted permission to mount a fresh appeal against his extradition to the United States.

He previously faced charges related to the leaking of military secrets. 

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The High Court in London allowed Mr Assange to challenge the assurances given by US officials regarding how his trial would be conducted.

In March, judges Dame Victoria Sharp and Mr Justice Johnson deferred their decision on whether Assange could take his case to another appeal hearing. 

They ruled he could appeal on three grounds unless the US provided “satisfactory” assurances. 

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These assurances were that Assange would be permitted to rely on the First Amendment of the US Constitution, would not face prejudice at trial due to his nationality, and that the death penalty would not be imposed.

Mr Assange’s wife, Stella Assange, and his supporters felt relieved after the High Court’s decision to grant him leave to challenge his extradition on two specific grounds.

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“We are relieved as a family that the courts took the right decision today but how long can this go on for? Our eldest son just turned seven,” she said.

“All their memories of their father are in the visiting hall of Belmarsh prison, and as the case goes along, it becomes clearer and clearer to everyone that Julian is in prison for doing good journalism.”

The first was whether his removal to the US would be compatible with the right to freedom of expression under the European Convention on Human Rights.

The second was whether he might be prejudiced or punished at trial due to his nationality.

The court accepted that there was an arguable case that Assange could be discriminated against. 

This decision followed revelations that a US prosecutor had suggested the First Amendment might not apply to foreigners in national security cases.

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