WikiLeaks founder Assange marks 5 years since being imprisoned in UK

It has been five years since WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was imprisoned at a high-security prison in the UK after spending seven years living in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.

Assange has been detained at the Belmarsh prison since April 11, 2019.

Supporters staged a rally in London to demand that Assange not be extradited to the US.

Amnesty International issued a statement that called his imprisonment "unacceptable."

"Julian Assange dared to bring to light revelations of alleged war crimes committed by the USA. It is unacceptable that years of his life have been stolen," the head of the rights group, Agnes Callamard, said in the statement.

She said he is detained on "politically-motivated charges" and noted that US authorities have failed to conduct a full and transparent investigation into his alleged war crimes.

"Instead, they have chosen to target Assange for publishing information leaked to him – even if it was of public interest," added Callamard.

The US charged Assange with hacking government computers and espionage after he acquired and published hundreds of thousands of classified documents between 2010 and 2011.

The UK High Court, in a pivotal 2021 ruling, decreed that Assange should be extradited, dismissing assertions about his fragile mental state and risks he might face in an American correctional facility.

Following suit, the Supreme Court in 2022 upheld that decision, while then-Home Secretary Priti Patel affirmed the extradition order, intensifying the legal battle.

In his latest bid for a reprieve, Assange is seeking authorization to scrutinize Patel's determination and challenge the initial 2021 verdict.

Last month, a UK High Court ruling granted Assange the right to appeal his extradition to the US and set a new hearing date for the case in May before adjourning it.

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