Julian Assange Declares 'War' After Swedish Rape Case Dropped

Julian Assange Declares 'War' After Swedish Rape Case Dropped

Julian Assange Declares 'War' After Swedish Rape Case Dropped

The Swedish prosecutor announced Friday that the investigation into WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange for suspected rape has been discontinued.

At a press briefing earlier today, Sweden's top prosecutor Marianne Ny said that by remaining in the embassy in London Assange had evaded the exercise of the European Arrest Warrant (EAW) that would have seen him extradited to Sweden.

Assange and his supporters feared that, if he were extradited to Sweden to face the sexual assault charges, he would then be extradited again to the U.S.to face far more serious charges relating to Wikileaks.

Assange complained in a tweet that he had been "detained for 7 years without charge" and said he would not "forgive or forget".

Assange could face a trial in the USA over the leaking of hundreds of thousands of secret United States military and diplomatic documents. But some experts said the development would put him in an even more precarious legal situation, if the USA has a sealed indictment for his arrest. However, she added that because Ecuador would not cooperate in serving Assange and transporting him to Sweden to face charges, her "assessment is that the transfer can not be executed in the foreseeable future".

Speaking to a crowd of reporters and supporters from the balcony of the Ecuadorean embassy in London, Assange said "today is an important victory" for him and for the United Nations human rights system, while noting that his battle is "far form over".

Assange hailed a "victory" and said his lawyers were now seeking a "dialogue" with British authorities about his future but gave no further details and repeated his claim that the U.S. is planning to extradite him for revealing state secrets. Speaking from the balcony of the Ecuadorian embassy in London, Assange said he could not forgive the awful injustice he had suffered.

The Ecuadorian government is to step up efforts to allow Mr Assange to continue his asylum in its country after Sweden's Director of Public Prosecutions Marianne Ny said she had made a decision to "discontinue" her investigation.

British officials said they do not comment on individual extradition cases. But, should Assange ever find his way back to Sweden-say, before August 2020, when the statue of limitations expires-Ny has said the investigation can immediately resume. The US government has protected the right of journalists to publish secret materials under the US Constitution's First Amendment.

After the Swedish announcement, WikiLeaks tweeted: "UK refuses to confirm or deny whether it has already received a United States extradition warrant for Julian Assange". Prosecutors were trying to determine, among other things, if Assange had sex with the woman while she was asleep and without using a condom.

Fritz said the process had dragged on for too long and that her client was "shocked" by the decision to drop it now.

But it added that Assange is now wanted for a "much less serious offense" than the original sex crimes claims, so police "will provide a level of resourcing which is proportionate to that offense".

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