The UK High Court ruled yesterday that WikiLeaks‘ Julian Assange may try to appeal to the UK Supreme Court an order calling for his extradition to Sweden because his case is a matter of “general public importance,” according to the Guardian.
In February 2011, a UK court ruled that Assange must be extradited to Sweden to face questioning about 2010 charges of sexual abuse filed by two Swedish women against him, as we have written. In July 2011, Assange appealed that ruling. In early November, the High Court ruled again that Assange must be extradited. Later in November, Assange filed an appeal asking for the opportunity to appeal his case to the UK Supreme Court. Today’s ruling allows him to ask the Supreme Court to hear his case.
The Associated Press noted that the High Court Judges “warned” Assange “that his chances of success are slim.” According to the AP, Assange “has 14 days to submit a written request for a hearing” at the Supreme Court. Further, according to the BBC, the Supreme Court may deny Assange’s request, but yesterday’s ruling lets him “directly ask the Supreme Court to look at his case.” If the court rejects his request, he will “have exhausted all legal avenues in Britain.”
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Assange said after the ruling that “I think this is the right decision and I am thankful, the long struggle for justice for me and for others continues.”
According to News.Com.Au, if the High Court judges rejected Assange’s request, Assange would have been extradited to Sweden in the next ten days. “What we ask for is humble — the right to not be shipped off to foreign lands without formal charges or the presentation of even the most basic evidence,” Assange is quoted as telling the AP before the ruling.
Assange on Editors
Assange slammed news editors in late November, according to Yahoo News. At Hong Kong’s Global Editors Network conference, at which Assange spoke through Skype, he said editors are “corrupt” and motivated by power.
However, many editors, including Le Monde’s editorial director Sylvie Kauffmann, rejected his accusations.