Extradition of Julian Assange to the United States approved by the British government

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Julian Assange’s extradition to the United States for espionage was approved by British Home Secretary Priti Patel on Friday.

The WikiLeaks co-founder’s legal team should file an appeal within the required 14 days. The development follows a UK court ruling in April that Assange could be sent to the US

FILE - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange pauses as he delivers a statement to the assembled media outside the High Court in London, Monday December 5, 2011.
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FILE – WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange pauses as he delivers a statement to the assembled media outside the High Court in London, Monday December 5, 2011.
(AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File)

The Home Office said in a statement that “the UK courts have not found that it would be oppressive, unfair or an abuse of process to extradite Mr Assange”.

EXTRADITION OF WIKILEAKS FOUNDER JULIAN ASSANGE APPROVED BY UK JUDGE

FILE - Julian Assange waves to supporters outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, May 19, 2017.

FILE – Julian Assange waves to supporters outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, May 19, 2017.
(AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

The decision is a big moment in Assange’s years-long battle to avoid being sent to the US

JULIAN ASSANGE SUFFERED STROKE DURING OCTOBER APPEAL HEARING, FIANCEE CLAIM

LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 11: Supporters gather outside as the High Court hears a US appeal over the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the Royal Courts of Justice, Chancery Lane on August 11, 2021 in London, England.

LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 11: Supporters gather outside as the High Court hears a US appeal over the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the Royal Courts of Justice, Chancery Lane on August 11, 2021 in London, England.
(Ming Yeung/Getty Images)

The US has sought extradition so Assange can stand trial on 17 espionage charges and one computer misuse charge for WikiLeaks’ release of a huge trove of classified documents years ago .

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US prosecutors allege Assange helped US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning steal classified military files which WikiLeaks later released, putting lives at risk.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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