Julian Assange’s supporters welcome decision but question reasons behind ruling

PA

Supporters of Julian Assange were overjoyed at the decision not to extradite him to the United States but expressed dismay that the ruling was made on health grounds.

His mother Christine urged the US not to appeal against the ruling, saying her son had suffered enough.

A spokesman for the Courage Foundation, one of the groups campaigning on behalf of the WikiLeaks founder, said: “We welcome today’s decision.

“We share concerns about his health but we are concerned about many other elements of this decision.

“A clear signal has been sent that the US arms can reach everywhere.”

Fidel Narvaez, who worked at the Ecuadorean embassy for much of the time Assange lived there, said: “Be aware that freedom of expression is still under attack – if it was not for Julian’s health condition, he would be extradited.”

Assange’s mother tweeted: “UK Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled against extraditing my son Julian to the US on medical grounds.

“US prosecutors state they will appeal.

“I implore Pres Trump & Pres elect Biden to order them to stand down.

“The decade long process was the punishment.

“He has suffered enough.”

Labour MP Richard Burgon said: “It is entirely right that Julian Assange will not be extradited to the US.

“Julian Assange would have been extradited because, as a journalist, he dared to expose US war crimes.

“Any extradition would have been an unprecedented attack on press freedom.”

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