Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Monday that Mexico could grant Julian Assange political asylum, if London agrees to release him.
A UK court blocked WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s extradition to the USA, where he could face up to 175 years in prison for alledged espionage and computer fraud.
Earlier in the day, UK Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled to block Assange’s extradition to the United States, as the journalist’s mental state would make him a suicide risk if he were handed over to the US.
Julian Assange should not be extradited to the USA to face charges of espionage and conspiracy to commit digital intrusion, District Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled on the morning of 4 January 2021.
It is currently unclear whether the US government will seek to appeal the decision. The prosecution must request permission to appeal it in the High Court within seven days of the date of Judge Baraitser’s verdict.
The judge accepted that Assange, who is now incarcerated in HM Prison Belmarsh, would likely be subjected to high levels of isolation as well as Special Administrative Measures both before and after trial in the US that would severely impact his mental health.
The defense will now decide whether they will launch a bail application without delay, as the bail option is believed to now be available to Assange, or whether they would like to prepare more thoroughly.
The US indictment against the award-winning author centers on his role in 2010-2011 in receiving and publishing classified logs from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Guantanamo Bay detainee files, and US diplomatic cables.
The documents revealed war crimes as well as other criminality and abuse allegedly committed by the US government and American-backed forces across the world.
There is no public interest defense for any charge brought under the 1917 Espionage Act. 17 out of the 18 charges against Assange fall under the legislation dating from the World War I period.
Assange is currently being kept in Belmarsh Prison near the British capital, where he was taken after the Ecuadorian Embassy in London traded him for a $4 billion IMF loan, and lifted his political asylum as journalist.
Sputnik / ABC Flash Point Political Asylum News 2020.