Swedish FM: No U.S. extradition request for Assange

Visiting Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said today that the U.S. had not contacted his country regarding a possible extradition of Julian Assange.

Source: B92

Assange has not been charged in either Sweden or the United States, but Swedish authorities issued a red Interpol notice for his arrest after allegations that he committed rape there.

Speaking in Belgrade today, Bildt said that the United States have not yet contacted his country, and added that Sweden has "independent judiciary, guaranteed by law," and that "political authorities do not influence its work".

The editor-in-chief of the whistleblowing website WikiLeaks was arrested and remanded in prison in London on Tuesday.

The Swedish warrant coincided with WikiLeaks' publishing of sensitive U.S. diplomatic cables, and lawyers for Assange said that they believed the sexual assault accusations against their client were politically motivated.

The rape complaints against the Australian were first filed by two Swedish women in August, to be quickly dismissed. But another prosecutor reopened the case, and told reporters yesterday that it had "nothing to do" with the global political furore surrounding the release of U.S. cables.

Meanwhile, Wikileaks continues to publish the documents, while under growing pressure. After DDoS attacks, and ousting from Amazon and EveryDNS, PayPal, Visa and MasterCard severed the website's donation flow through its services.

Today, guardian.co.uk reports that MasterCard - "the multinational payments network which yesterday throttled money transfers to WikiLeaks, was this morning brought offline following an attack by internet avengers, Anonymous".


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