Global RiskNews Briefs

UK Blocks Assange’s Extradition Appeal

The highest court in the UK has refused to hear an appeal by Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks, against his extradition to the US. In the US, Assange will face espionage charges. He was indicted by the US Department of Justice in 2019 over his alleged involvement in the acquisition and publication of thousands of classified US documents, most of which diplomatic and military-related, in 2010. The leaked documents contained highly sensitive information related to wars in Afghanistan and Iraq that occurred throughout the early 2000s. The extradition to the US was blocked on mental health grounds after medical experts in the UK determined that the move could place Assange at a high risk of suicide.

Following the determination, the UK government launched an appeal against the decision. In December 2021, the High Court ruled in favor of the US, finding that the mental health concerns were only viable if Assange were to be imprisoned in the US under highly restrictive conditions. US authorities assured the judges that Assange would have comfortable accommodations before and after his trial unless he committed an act that made restructures necessary. Assange would not be held in a super maximum-security prison either.

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