WIKI LEAK’S ASSANGE FACES ARREST BY BRITISH POLICE

Fox News on June 20, 2012, published an AP report on British police standing poised to arrest WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange should he step out of Ecuador’s London embassy. Excerpts below:

Assange says he is seeking political asylum at the South American nation’s diplomatic mission.

The 40-year-old Australian took refuge in the embassy a few doors down from the Harrods department store on June 21.

Ecuador said Assange would “remain at the embassy, under the protection of the Ecuadorean government” while authorities in the capital, Quito, considered his case.

Assange was arrested in London in December 2010 at Sweden’s request. Since then he has been fighting extradition to the Scandinavian country, where he is wanted for questioning over alleged sexual assaults on two women in 2010.

Assange had all but run out of legal options in Britain, where the Supreme Court last week affirmed an earlier decision that he should be sent to Sweden. He could still apply to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. His lawyers have said they are considering doing that.

Some legal experts said they were mystified by the reasoning behind Assange’s dramatic asylum bid.

Assange is seeking political asylum in the South American nation, in a dramatic bid to avoid extradition to Sweden for questioning about alleged sex crimes. His supporters say he fears charges in the United States for leaking hundreds of thousands of secret U.S. documents. But some legal experts say it is a desperate and likely futile move.

“He knows he’s reached the end of the road in the U.K. He knows he’s going to be extradited to Sweden,” said Alex Carlile, a senior British lawyer with expertise in extradition matters. “Basically, he has nowhere to go.”

In London, Britain’s foreign ministry said it would “work with the Ecuadorean authorities to resolve this situation as soon as possible.” Ecuadorean ambassador Anna Alban said she had had “cordial and constructive” discussions with British officials on Wednesday.

“It’s inconceivable that the U.K. government would give him safe passage” to an airport, Carlile said. “Even if he was in a diplomatic vehicle driving out the back door, that vehicle would be stopped and he would be extracted from it by the Metropolitan Police.”

On Wednesday police officers were stationed outside the Edwardian apartment block in the tony Knightsbridge district that houses the embassy.

Assange was arrested in London in December 2010 at Sweden’s request. Since then he has been on bail and fighting extradition to the Scandinavian country, where he is wanted for questioning over alleged sexual assaults on two women in August 2010.

A U.S. soldier, Pfc. Bradley Manning, has been charged with aiding the enemy by passing the secret files to WikiLeaks and is awaiting trial.

Comment by Världsinbördeskriget: Obviously Assange is desperate to avoid extradition to Sweden and it is not out of the question that Sweden might extradite him to the United States on a request of the American government.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: