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Assange's extradition hearing to resume in September

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Wanted man: US is seeking to question Julian Assange over diplomatic leaks

Wanted man: US is seeking to question Julian Assange over diplomatic leaks

Wanted man: US is seeking to question Julian Assange over diplomatic leaks

The extradition hearing of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been rescheduled for September.

Mr Assange is wanted for questioning in the US over defence cables leaked a decade ago. He is currently being held in London's maximum-security Belmarsh Prison while the court system tries to reschedule his extradition hearing which was paused due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The hearing was originally due to begin on May 18.

A brief hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court yesterday determined the case should resume in September.

Journalists were unable to attend remotely after the conference call system - set up to help the press comply with social distancing rules - was not connected.

A spokeswoman from press freedom organisation Bridges for Media Freedom said the hearing was due to resume in September, although the exact date has yet to be set.

The case is expected to last three weeks and the courts service is still looking for a Crown Court with the capacity to take the case, which might take place outside of London, the spokeswoman said.

Mr Assange did not attend yesterday's hearing via video link due to being unwell.

His lawyers are calling for him to be released on bail, saying he is at heightened risk of contracting Covid-19 due to a pre-existing respiratory condition.

Mr Assange has been held in Belmarsh prison since he was dragged out of the Ecuadorian embassy a year ago.

He had been sheltering in the embassy since 2012 after taking refuge there to avoid extradition to Sweden on allegations of sexual assault.

Irish Independent