The United States is again calling for the extradition of Julian Assange – The chances of success

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Once more the US is trying to extradite Julian Assange to the country, with British justice examining from Wednesday the appeal filed by the American authorities in the refusal to extradite the founder of WiliLeaks. Assange faces up to 175 years in prison in the United States for leaking classified documents, a case that his defenders have called political and an attack on freedom of expression.

In January, British Judge Vanessa Barreicer rejected Washington’s request to extradite 50-year-old Assange to the United States, saying there was a risk of suicide.

However, Washington appealed the decision, mainly questioning the credibility of an expert who testified in favor of Assange and regarding his sensitive mental health.

Psychiatrist Michael Koppelman has admitted that conceals from justice the fact that his client became a father twice while he was locked up at the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

The appeal will be heard on Wednesday and Thursday. If rejected, Washington will only be able to appeal to the British Supreme Court, which is not certain it will accept the US appeal.

“Question of life and death”

THE Julian Assange He was arrested by British police in April 2019 after spending seven years locked up at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he had taken refuge when he was released on parole. He feared he would be extradited to the United States or Sweden, where rape charges were dropped.

The Australian, whom support many organizations defending freedom of the press, faces up to 175 years in prison in the United States because more than 700,000 classified military and diplomatic documents, mainly related to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, have been leaked to WikiLeaks since 2010.

“US appeal has a chance of success”

According to the French lawyer Antoine Wei, the American appeal has “no new evidence that could lead to the annulment of the decision in the first instance”.

Wei, as reported by the French Agency and the Athens News Agency, commented that Assange “was very injured, both psychologically and physically” the last time he saw him, two weeks ago, in Belmars prison. He also asked the judges to act “consistently” and “ratify the decision not to extradite him”. According to Wei, “it is a matter of life and death.”

However, Carl Tobias, an expert in American law, believes that the US appeal has a chance of success.

“The United States may be able to convince the Supreme Court that Baraicher gave too much weight to the (Koppelman) report to make its decision,” he said, adding that this “may not be enough to justify the annulment of the whole.” of its decision “.

“10 years is enough, release Assange now!”

Protesters demand that Julian Assange not be extradited

Hundreds of protesters gathered in front of London’s Supreme Court on Saturday, holding banners reading “Do not extradite Assange”, “Journalism is not a crime”, or “10 years is enough, release Assange now!” Assange’s partner Stella Morris was also present, demanding his release.

“Julian Assange should not be in jail for taking information from public witnesses, for showing the world what is really going on, and for exposing our corrupt politicians,” said Bo Oldfield, one of the protesters.

Many human rights and freedom of the press organizations – including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Reporters Without Borders (RSF) – had called for “deep concern” in mid-October. Justice Minister to drop charges against Assange.

The trial against Assange began during the presidency of Donald Trump. Now that he has been succeeded by Democrat Joe Biden, “his Justice Secretary could decide to overturn the decision to indict Assange and request his extradition,” Tobias explained.

However, this does not seem to be the case, he notes, which indicates, as he points out, that the United States “may consider it a permanent threat to their security.”

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