Attribution: David G. Silvers, Cancillería del Ecuador, CC BY-SA 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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Julian Paul Assange (/əˈsɑːnʒ/ ə-SAHNZH; né Hawkins; born 3 July 1971) is an Australian editor, publisher, and activist who founded WikiLeaks in 2006. WikiLeaks came to international attention in 2010 when it published a series of leaks provided by U.S. Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning.[a] These leaks included the Baghdad airstrike Collateral Murder video (April 2010), the Afghanistan war logs (July 2010), the Iraq war logs (October 2010), and Cablegate (November 2010). After the 2010 leaks, the United States government launched a criminal investigation into WikiLeaks.
In November 2010, Sweden issued a European arrest warrant for Assange over allegations of sexual misconduct, which he denied and said that they were a pretext for a further extradition to the United States over his role in the publication of secret US military documents. After losing his battle against extradition to Sweden, he breached bail and took refuge in the Embassy of Ecuador in London in June 2012. He was granted asylum by Ecuador in August 2012 on the grounds of political persecution and fears he might be extradited to the United States. Swedish prosecutors dropped their investigation in 2019, saying their evidence had "weakened considerably due to the long period of time that has elapsed since the events in question".
During the 2016 U.S. election campaign, WikiLeaks published confidential Democratic Party emails, showing that the party's national committee favoured Hillary Clinton over her rival Bernie Sanders in the primaries. In March 2017, WikiLeaks published a series of documents which detailed the CIA's electronic surveillance and cyber warfare capabilities.
On 11 April 2019, Assange's asylum was withdrawn following a series of disputes with Ecuadorian authorities. The police were invited into the embassy and he was arrested. He was found guilty of breaching the Bail Act and sentenced to 50 weeks in prison. The United States government unsealed an indictment charging Assange with Conspiracy to Commit Computer Intrusion related to the leaks provide
d by Manning. In May 2019 and June 2020 the United States government unsealed new indictments against Assange, charging him with violating the Espionage Act of 1917 and alleging a history of conspiring with hackers. Editors from newspapers as well as press freedom organisations, criticised the government's decision to charge Assange under the Espionage Act, characterising it as an attack on freedom of the press.
On 4 January 2021, UK District Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled against the United States' request to extradite Assange and stated that doing so would be "oppressive" given concerns over Assange's mental health and risk of suicide. On 6 January 2021, Assange was denied bail, pending an appeal by the United States. On 10 December 2021, the High Court in London ruled that Assange could be extradited to the US to face the charges. In March 2022, the UK Supreme Court refused Assange permission to appeal. On 17 June 2022, Home Secretary Priti Patel approved the extradition. On 1 July 2022, it was announced that Assange had formally appealed against the extradition order.
Assange has been confined in Belmarsh, a category A prison, in London since April 2019.
Analysis for Julian Assange
1971-07-03 15:00:00 LMT
19° 15′ 32.3″ S 146° 49′ 1.0″ E
Townsville QLD 4810, Australia
1x Records. Last Queried Dec 2, 2023 12:05 AM GMT