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Julian Assange freed in US plea deal

Julian Assange freed in US plea deal

Washington, June 25 (UNI) Julian Assange has been released from British prison, according to WikiLeaks, the organisation he founded.
Wikileaks posted on social media a video of him boarding a flight that left the UK from London’s Stansted airport on Monday evening, the Guardian reported.
The announcement came shortly after news broke that Assange was set to plead guilty later this week to violating US espionage law, in a deal that would allow him to return home to his native Australia.
US prosecutors said in court papers that Assange, 52, has agreed to plead guilty to a single criminal count of conspiring to obtain and disclose classified US national defence documents, the Guardian quoted the filings in the US district court for the Northern Mariana Islands.
"The defendant will plead guilty to the charge in the (Criminal) Information of conspiring to unlawfully obtain and disseminate classified information relating to the national defense of the United States," the letter filed by the US Justice Department said.
The US has over the years argued that the Wikileaks files which disclosed information about the Iraq and Afghanistan wars endangered lives.
The criminal information, filed alongside the letter, said, Assange "knowingly and unlawfully conspired" with Chelsea Manning to "received and obtained documents, writings, and notes connected with the national defense" and "wilfully communicated" the documents to "persons not entitled to receive them", as per Xinhua news agency.
Assange spent the last five years in a British prison, from where he was fighting extradition to the US, the BBC said.
According to CBS, Assange will spend no time in US custody and will receive credit for the time spent incarcerated in the UK. He will return to Australia, according to a letter from the justice department.
Wikileaks on X said that Assange left Belmarsh prison on Monday after 1,901 days in a small cell.
UNI ING

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