Julian Assange Back?

Espen Moe, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Here’s what we know…

On Friday (June 17), British Home Secretary Priti Patel approved the extradition of Julian Assange to the United States, where Assange will face spying charges.

Assange’s attorneys are expected to file an appeal within the 14 days allocated for the appeal process.

This latest decision comes two months after a British Court ruled that Assange could be extradited to the U.S.

In a statement, the Home Office elaborated on the court’s decision to extradite Assange, saying that “the U.K courts have not found that it would be oppressive, unjust or an abuse of process to extradite Mr. Assange.”

The statement continues, “Nor have they found that extradition would be incompatible with his human rights, including his right to a fair trial and to freedom of expression, and that whilst in the [U.S.] he will be treated appropriately, including in relation to his health.”

The decision also brings the Wikileaks’ CEO’s years-long legal saga to avoid extradition to the U.S., where he’ll face 17 charges of espionage and one charge of computer misuse, closer to a conclusion.

These charges have to do with the treasure trove of classified documents Assange’s Wikileaks helped leak.

Yet, to his supporters, Assange is nothing more than an anti-establishment hero, with many of his international supporters believing that the U.S. is only pursuing the charges against Assange because he was instrumental in exposing wrongdoing in Iraq and Afghanistan.

These same supporters argue Assange’s extradition is politically-motivated, an attempt to suppress free speech and journalism.