British justice formally authorizes extradition of Julian Assange to the United States

La justice britannique autorise formellement l'extradition de Julian Assange aux Etats-Unis

British justice on Wednesday formally authorized the extradition to the United States of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who wants to be tried for espionage after years of judicial strife.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London has formally issued an extradition order and it is now up to UK Home Secretary Priti Patel to approve it, although defense lawyers can still appeal to the High Court.

Caught in a protracted legal saga, the 50-year-old Australian is wanted by US courts who seek his attempt to disseminate, since 2010, more than 700,000 classified documents specifically on US military and diplomatic activities in Iraq . and in Afghanistan.

Prosecuted under a law specifically against espionage, Julian Assange faced 175 years in prison, in a case denounced by human rights organizations as a serious attack on freedom of the press.

On 14 March, he had lost one of his last hopes of escaping his extradition, after the British Supreme Court refused to examine his appeal.

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