Pamela Anderson and Lady Gaga rally to cause of Julian Assange

Andrew Cummings
May 20, 2017

Sweden's Director of Public Prosecution, Marianne Ny, dropped [decision, PDF] the preliminary investigation of rape charges against WikiLeaks [official website] founder Julian Assange on Friday.

He sought asylum at the embassy over fears that if he is extradited to Sweden he would be sent onward to the USA for prosecution over WikiLeaks' publication of secret documents, including thousands of US diplomatic cables.

The Swedish prosecutor " s office announced today the closure of the investigation to Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks site, for an alleged violation.

The 45-year-old Assange has always denied the rape allegation but has been holed up in the embassy since 2012 to avoid extradition.

Assange's defence lawyer Per Samuelson hailed Sweden's decision as a "total victory for us".

The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention past year said Assange was in effect being arbitrarily detained in violation of worldwide law.

Assange complained in a tweet that he had been "detained for 7 years without charge" and said he would not "forgive or forget". But it by no means erases seven years of detention without charge, imprisoned under house arrest and nearly five years here in this embassy without sunlight.

Assange also lashed out at Sweden for taking seven years to investigate allegations he maintained were baseless.

Ecuador granted Assange political asylum in 2012, but a constant police presence and the arrest order have prevented him from exiting the embassy in London ever since.

"I will take on the responsibility of inviting Mr. Assange to leave the Ecuadorean embassy at the latest 30 days after the start of our government", Lasso told Reuters back in February. Police say the next day he faces arrest for breaking the conditions of his bail.

"You may be an enemy of the state but you are not an enemy of humanity", Lady Gaga told Assange in the video interview, which was released by Wikileaks on Wednesday.

The department said Friday it had no comment on Assange.

He said that lawyers for the Australian, who are based around the world, were discussing the implications of the decision.

He made a short appearance and did not take any questions.

Earlier this month, she blogged again about Assange in a post called "We have more than a romantic life", in which she said that the romance rumors were "a distraction when so much is at stake".

Assange said British authorities had refused to confirm or deny if the USA had issued a warrant for his extradition from the UK.

There were initially two separate allegations being investigated, but one was dropped in 2015 because the statute of limitations ran out.

Elisabeth Massi Fritz, the attorney for Assange's accuser, said, "My client is shocked, and no closure decision can get her to change that Assange has exposed her to a rape".

But it added that Assange is now wanted for a "much less serious offense" than the original sex crimes claims, so police "will provide a level of resourcing which is proportionate to that offense".

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