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04:22

UK: Next Assange hearing 'life or death' - WikiLeaks editor after 50 week sentence

United Kingdom, London
May 01, 2019 at 13:04 GMT +00:00 · Published

WikiLeaks' Editor-in-Chief Kristinn Hrafnsson said Julian Assange's next hearing would be "a question of life and death" and pose a major challenge to press freedom outside Southwark Crown Court in London on Wednesday, where the 47-year-old was sentenced to 50 weeks imprisonment for breaching bail conditions.

Assange's lawyer Jennifer Robinson also told journalists outside the court that the prospect of an extradition to the United States would set "a terrible precedent for all countries and raises questions about whether other countries, like Pakistan or Iran, might seek to do the same."

She added that they had received a provisional extradition request with a charge relating to conspiracy to commit computer intrusion, a crime which faces up to five years imprisonment, but that it was possible more charges could still be added.

Hrafnsson went on to express his disappointment at the length of the sentence, calling it "an outrage," adding that any possibility of a US extradition "should send a shockwave to all journalists and the general public."

Assange took refuge inside the Ecuador Embassy in 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden on rape allegations, where he remained until last month when Ecuador agreed to let UK police apprehend him.

The hearing on the US extradition request will take place on Thursday.

04:22
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WikiLeaks' Editor-in-Chief Kristinn Hrafnsson said Julian Assange's next hearing would be "a question of life and death" and pose a major challenge to press freedom outside Southwark Crown Court in London on Wednesday, where the 47-year-old was sentenced to 50 weeks imprisonment for breaching bail conditions.

Assange's lawyer Jennifer Robinson also told journalists outside the court that the prospect of an extradition to the United States would set "a terrible precedent for all countries and raises questions about whether other countries, like Pakistan or Iran, might seek to do the same."

She added that they had received a provisional extradition request with a charge relating to conspiracy to commit computer intrusion, a crime which faces up to five years imprisonment, but that it was possible more charges could still be added.

Hrafnsson went on to express his disappointment at the length of the sentence, calling it "an outrage," adding that any possibility of a US extradition "should send a shockwave to all journalists and the general public."

Assange took refuge inside the Ecuador Embassy in 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden on rape allegations, where he remained until last month when Ecuador agreed to let UK police apprehend him.

The hearing on the US extradition request will take place on Thursday.

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