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02:05

UK: Assange to face full US extradition hearing next February

United Kingdom, London
June 14, 2019 at 13:08 GMT +00:00 · Published

WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange is set to face a full US extradition hearing in February 2020, Westminster Magistrates' Court in London ruled on Friday.

Lawyer representing Julian Assange, Jennifer Robinson, spoke to the press outside the courthouse following Assange's procedural hearing. Robinson said, "We'll be receiving the first statement from the prosecution at the end of July, and a timetable has been set down towards a hearing next February 2020."

Robinson stressed that the case represents "an outrageous affront to journalistic protections. And on that basis, we would certainly hope that no journalist or publisher would be extradited in these circumstances." She added, "There will be a very big fight ahead."

Scores of Assange's supporters rallied outside the Westminster Magistrates' Court during the procedural hearing.

Assange was arrested on April 11, after Ecuador officially revoked his asylum status and allowed the UK police to enter the premises of the Ecuadorian embassy in London, to escort him out and take him into custody. The WikiLeaks founder was then sentenced to 50 weeks in prison for violating bail conditions after spending seven years in the Ecuadorian embassy.

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WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange is set to face a full US extradition hearing in February 2020, Westminster Magistrates' Court in London ruled on Friday.

Lawyer representing Julian Assange, Jennifer Robinson, spoke to the press outside the courthouse following Assange's procedural hearing. Robinson said, "We'll be receiving the first statement from the prosecution at the end of July, and a timetable has been set down towards a hearing next February 2020."

Robinson stressed that the case represents "an outrageous affront to journalistic protections. And on that basis, we would certainly hope that no journalist or publisher would be extradited in these circumstances." She added, "There will be a very big fight ahead."

Scores of Assange's supporters rallied outside the Westminster Magistrates' Court during the procedural hearing.

Assange was arrested on April 11, after Ecuador officially revoked his asylum status and allowed the UK police to enter the premises of the Ecuadorian embassy in London, to escort him out and take him into custody. The WikiLeaks founder was then sentenced to 50 weeks in prison for violating bail conditions after spending seven years in the Ecuadorian embassy.

W/S Supporters of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange holding banners and chanting: "Free Julian Assange", outside Westminster Magistrates' Court, London

M/S Lawyer representing Julian Assange Jennifer Robinson speaking to press

SOT, Jennifer Robinson, Lawyer representing Julian Assange: "There is a procedural timetable that is being set down. We'll be receiving the first statement from the prosecution at the end of July, and a timetable has been set down towards a hearing next February, 2020."

W/S Assange's supporters holding placards and press *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Jennifer Robinson, Lawyer representing Julian Assange: "We are very concerned about his health. He remains in a healthcare ward in Belmarsh. He is under huge amount of pressure and in very difficult circumstances. He is facing a significant, complex case of huge size and scale. And that is incredible pressure to be placed upon someone who is already suffering significant health impacts as a result of his [inaudible] inside the embassy and now inside the prison."

M/S Assange's supporters holding placards reading: "Free Assange" and "No extradition - free Julian Assange" *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Jennifer Robinson, Lawyer representing Julian Assange: "These are incredibly serious charges, which impact upon typical news-gathering activities that journalists engage in all the time the world over. This indictment is a direct attack on free speech and a direct attack on journalists and publishers everywhere. It should be a matter of grave concern for all media organisations and free speech groups, which is why we've heard these significant criticisms of the US attempting to run on these terms."

M/S Assange's supporters holding banners and placards *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Jennifer Robinson, Lawyer representing Julian Assange: "There will be a very big fight ahead. It raises fundamental questions about free speech, which is why Julian has committed to defend himself in these proceedings."

W/S Assange's supporters chanting and holding banners *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Jennifer Robinson, Lawyer representing Julian Assange: "This case raises such fundamental questions about freedom of speech. We've heard in court today. It's an outrageous affront to journalistic protections. And on that basis, we would certainly hope that no journalist or publisher would be extradited in these circumstances. But of course, it's a very long road ahead, and we have to wait to see what happens."

W/S Assange's supporters holding banners

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