67 Facts About Assange


Julian Paul Assange is an Australian editor, publisher, and activist who founded WikiLeaks in 2006.

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On 11 April 2019, Assange's asylum was withdrawn following a series of disputes with the Ecuadorian authorities.

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On 4 January 2021, UK District Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled against the United States' request to extradite Assange and stated that doing so would be "oppressive" given concerns over Assange's mental health and risk of suicide.

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On 6 January 2021, Assange was denied bail, pending an appeal by the United States.

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On 1 July 2022, it was announced that Assange had formally appealed against the extradition order.

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Christine then became involved with Leif Meynell, known as Leif Hamilton, whom Julian Assange later described as "a member of an Australian cult" called The Family.

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In 1987, aged 16, Assange began hacking under the name Mendax, supposedly taken from Horace's splendide mendax.

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In September 1991, Assange was discovered hacking into the Melbourne master terminal of Nortel, a Canadian multinational telecommunications corporation.

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In 1993, Assange used his computing skills to help the Victoria Police Child Exploitation Unit to prosecute individuals responsible for publishing and distributing child pornography.

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From 2007 to 2010, Assange travelled continuously on WikiLeaks business, visiting Africa, Asia, Europe and North America.

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In 2013, Assange analysed the Kissinger cables held at the US National Archives and released them in searchable form.

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In January 2011, Assange described the allegation that WikiLeaks had conspired with Manning as "absolute nonsense".

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In 2013, US officials said it was unlikely that the Justice Department would indict Assange for publishing classified documents because it would have to prosecute the news organisations and writers who published classified material.

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In June 2013, The New York Times said that court and other documents suggested that Assange was being examined by a grand jury and "several government agencies", including by the FBI.

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In July 2015, Assange called himself a "wanted journalist" in an open letter to the French president published in Le Monde.

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Later that day, Assange told journalist Raffi Khatchadourian that Sweden has a "very, very poor judicial system" and a culture of "crazed radical feminist ideology".

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In March 2015, after public criticism from other Swedish law practitioners, Ny changed her mind about interrogating Assange, who had taken refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

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On 19 June 2012, the Ecuadorian foreign minister, Ricardo Patino, announced that Assange had applied for political asylum, that the Ecuadorian government was considering his request, and that Assange was at the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

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WikiLeaks insiders stated that Assange decided to seek asylum because he felt abandoned by the Australian government.

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On 15 September 2014 while campaigning for Kim Dotcom, Assange appeared via remote video link on his Moment of Truth town hall meeting held in Auckland, which discussed the programme.

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On 5 February 2016, the UN's Working Group on Arbitrary Detention concluded that Assange had been subject to arbitrary detention by the UK and Swedish Governments since 7 December 2010, including his time in prison, on conditional bail and in the Ecuadorian embassy.

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The Working Group said Assange should be allowed to walk free and be given compensation.

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In September 2016 and again on 12 January 2017, WikiLeaks tweeted that Assange would agree to US prison in exchange for President Obama granting Chelsea Manning clemency.

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The New York Times wrote that Assange had timed the release to coincide with the 2016 Democratic National Convention because he believed Clinton had pushed for his indictment and he regarded her as a "liberal war hawk".

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In interviews, Assange repeatedly said that the Russian government was not the source of the DNC and Podesta emails, and accused the Clinton campaign of "a kind of neo-McCarthy hysteria" about Russian involvement.

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In October 2021, Assange's lawyers introduced the alleged plot during a hearing of the High Court of Justice in London as it considered the US appeal of a lower court's ruling that Assange could not be extradited to face charges in the US.

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On 6 June 2017, Assange tweeted his support for NSA leaker Reality Winner, who had been arrested three days earlier.

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On 16 August 2017, US Republican congressman Dana Rohrabacher visited Assange and told him that Trump would pardon him on condition that he would agree to say that Russia was not involved in the 2016 Democratic National Committee email leaks.

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In February 2018, after Sweden had suspended its investigation, Assange brought two legal actions, arguing that Britain should drop its arrest warrant for him as it was "no longer right or proportionate to pursue him" and the arrest warrant for breaching bail had lost its "purpose and its function".

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In March 2018, Assange used social media to criticise Germany's arrest of Catalonian separatist leader Carles Puigdemont.

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Ecuador reportedly devised plans to help Assange escape should British police forcibly enter the embassy to seize him.

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The Guardian reported that by 2014 Assange had compromised the embassy's communications system.

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In October 2018, Assange sued the government of Ecuador for violating his "fundamental rights and freedoms" by threatening to remove his protection and cut off his access to the outside world, refusing him visits from journalists and human rights organisations and installing signal jammers to prevent phone calls and internet access.

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An Ecuadorian judge ruled against him, saying that requiring Assange to pay for his Internet use and clean up after his cat did not violate his right to asylum.

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In November 2018, Pamela Anderson, a close friend and regular visitor of Assange, gave an interview in which she asked the Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison, to defend Assange.

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In March 2019, Assange submitted a complaint to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights asking the Ecuadorian government to "ease the conditions that it had imposed on his residence" at the embassy and to protect him from extradition to the US.

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The investigation was precipitated by a complaint by Assange that accused UC Global of violating his privacy and client-attorney privileges as well as committing misappropriation, bribery and money laundering.

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The United Kingdom Central Authority, which is in charge of processing and responding to EIOs in the UK, provisionally denied De la Mata's request to question Assange, raised a number of objections to the request, and asked for more details.

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On 2 April 2019, Ecuador's president Moreno said that Assange had violated the terms of his asylum, after photos surfaced on the internet linking Moreno to a corruption scandal.

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On 16 May 2019, Manning refused to testify before a new grand jury investigating Assange, stating that she "believe[d] this grand jury seeks to undermine the integrity of public discourse with the aim of punishing those who expose any serious, ongoing, and systemic abuses of power by this government".

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In June 2021, Chelsea Manning said her grand jury resistance was not contingent on Assange being the target, and that she was not even sure he was.

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The charges stem from the allegation that Assange attempted and failed to crack a password hash so that Chelsea Manning could use a different username to download classified documents and avoid detection.

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On 23 May 2019, Assange was indicted on 17 new charges relating to the Espionage Act of 1917 in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.

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Steve Vladeck, a professor at the University of Texas School of Law, stated that what Assange is accused of doing is factually different from but legally similar to what professional journalists do.

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Suzanne Nossel of PEN America said it was immaterial if Assange was a journalist or publisher and pointed instead to First Amendment concerns.

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Mark Warner, vice chairman of the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, said that Assange was "a dedicated accomplice in efforts to undermine American security".

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Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch, wrote that Assange's prosecution for publishing leaked documents is "a major threat to global media freedom".

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Ben Wizner from the American Civil Liberties Union said that prosecuting Assange "for violating US secrecy laws would set an especially dangerous precedent for US journalists, who routinely violate foreign secrecy laws to deliver information vital to the public's interest".

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On 13 September 2019, District Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled that Assange would not be released on 22 September when his prison term ended because he was a flight risk and his lawyer had not applied for bail.

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On 1 November 2019, Melzer said that Assange's health had continued to deteriorate and his life was now at risk.

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The petition said, Assange's publications "were clearly in the public interest and not espionage".

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Australian MPs Andrew Wilkie and George Christensen visited Assange and pressed the UK and Australian governments to intervene to stop his being extradited.

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In November 2021, his father told a French interview program that Assange had received a non-mandatory COVID-19 vaccination in Belmarsh Prison.

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On 25 June 2020, Doctors for Assange published another letter in The Lancet, "reiterating their demand to end the torture and medical neglect of Julian Assange", in which they state their "professional and ethical duty to speak out against, report, and stop torture".

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In September 2020, an open letter in support of Assange was sent to Boris Johnson with the signatures of two current heads of state and approximately 160 other politicians.

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On 21 October 2019, Assange appeared for a case management hearing at the court.

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Patrick Eller, a former forensics examiner with the US Army Criminal Investigation Command, testified that Assange did not crack and could not have cracked the password mentioned in the US indictment, as Chelsea Manning had intentionally sent only a portion of the password's hash.

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On 6 January 2021, Assange was denied bail on the grounds that he was a flight risk, pending an appeal by the United States.

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On 24 January 2022 Assange was granted permission to petition the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom for an appeal hearing, but in March the court denied permission for an appeal, saying that Assange had not raised an arguable point of law.

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On 1 July 2022, Assange lodged an appeal against the extradition in the High Court.

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In 2012 Assange hosted World Tomorrow show, broadcast by Russian network RT.

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In 2010, Assange said he was a libertarian and that "WikiLeaks is designed to make capitalism more free and ethical".

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In 2010, Assange received a deal for his autobiography worth at least US$1.

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In 2011, an article in Private Eye by its editor, Ian Hislop, recounted a rambling phone call he had received from Assange, who was especially angry about Private Eye's report that Israel Shamir, an Assange associate in Russia, was a Holocaust denier.

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In 2015, Assange began a relationship with Stella Moris, his South African-born lawyer.

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Views on Assange have been given by a number of public figures, including journalists, well-known whistleblowers, activists and world leaders.

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In January 2021, Australian journalist John Pilger stated that, were Assange to be extradited, "no journalist who challenges power will be safe".

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