2011-02-07 Julian Assange hearing Q&A

What are the charges raised against Julian Assange?

  • Contrary to popular belief, there are no charges against Julian Assange at the moment. In his hearing, he will be fighting an attempt by Swedish authorities to have him extradited to Sweden from the UK for further questioning on allegations.

When is the extradition hearing?

  • Today, Feb. 7, at 5:00am Eastern time. It is set to last 2 days.

Why is Mr. Assange in the UK, anyway? Was he running from the law by leaving Sweden?

  • No. As former Swedish judge points out in a published criticism of how Mr. Assange has been treated by law enforcement in Sweden, the chief Swedish prosecutor, Marianne Ny, did not take the opportunity “to interview Assange whilst he was still in Sweden.” So the question is raised as to “why she did not accept Assange’s proposal to be interrogated in England,” which is a legitimate request, in accordance with “rules valid in both Sweden and Britain on Mutual Legal Assistance.” Read more

Why doesn't Mr. Assange want to be extradited to Sweden?

  • For one thing, he and his lawyer believe (as do many lawyers and other authorities familiar with European law) that Sweden is not within its right to extradite Mr. Assange. International European law does not support extraditing someone on the basis that they are merely suspected of having committed a crime. So the extradition request appears illegitimate.

  • Secondly: It is believed that he can more easily be extradited to the US from Sweden than from the UK. But this doesn't mean that his main argument in court will be about US extradition or fear of the death penalty in the US, as many media organizations have said.

    Despite having access to the complete list of arguments from Mr. Assange's lawyer, "various media have headlined [fear of the death penalty in the US] as if it were the primary or even only" argument against extradition. Read more

    But this doesn't mean that extradition to the US is irrelevant in this hearing. In fact, there are though to be "extremely strong interests in US who want him delivered because of Wikileaks" and "reports from the US embassy in Stockholm published by Wikileaks have revealed that the Swedish Government has gone out of its way to be helpful to US in various controversial matters." This might also explain why Mr. Assange is not enthusiastic about returning to Sweden at the moment. Read More

How can I stay up-to-date on this hearing?

  • You can bookmark WLcentral.org and watch this Twitter list for real-time teeting from the courtroom. You don't need a Twitter account and you don't have to "follow" the list to see the feed.

My question isn't in this list. How do I get answers?

  • Leave a comment with your question and we will do our best to answer it!

Theme by Danetsoft and Danang Probo Sayekti inspired by Maksimer