Julian Assange in `fighting spirits`: Lawyer

Last Updated: Sunday, August 19, 2012 - 18:17

London: Julian Assange`s lawyer on Sunday said the WikiLeaks founder was in "fighting spirits" and was thankful to the people of Ecuador for granting him diplomatic asylum.

Spanish human rights investigator Baltasar Garzón, who heads Assange’s legal team, spoke mainly in Spanish outside the embassy to a large group of journalists.

He said: "I have spoken to Julian Assange and I can tell you he is in fighting spirits and he is thankful to the people of Ecuador and especially to the President for granting asylum. Julian Assange has always fought for truth and justice and has defended human rights and continues to do so".

Garzón added: "He demands that WikiLeaks and his own rights be respected. Julian Assange has instructed his lawyers to carry out a legal action in order to protect the rights of WikiLeaks, Julian himself and all those currently being investigated".

Earlier, sources close to him said that an assurance by Sweden that he would not be extradited to the United States could be a way out of the current impasse over his extradition.

Assange faces allegations of sexual offences in Sweden, where Britain is committed to extradite him after all legal avenues in this country were exhausted.

Kristinn Hrafnsson, the only person other than Assange who is authorised by WikiLeaks to be a first point of contact for receiving sensitive information, is quoted in the Sunday Times as saying: "If the Swedish authorities give an assurance there won’t be an extradition and the UK authorities as well, that might go a long way in being a basis of negotiations".

Britain has refused safe passage to Assange after Ecuador last week granted him `diplomatic asylum`, which is not recognised by Britain.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, August 19, 2012 - 18:17

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