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Updated: March 3, 2011 22:21 IST

Assange moves court

Hasan Suroor
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WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. File photo: AP.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. File photo: AP.

Officials at the High Court in London said on Thursday that the papers had been lodged. No date has been set for a hearing.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on Thursday appealed against last week’s court order allowing his extradition to Sweden to face allegations of sexual misconduct brought by two Swedish women.

Mr Assange denies the allegations and says they are politically motivated.

His lawyers, who lodged the appeal in the High Court here, claimed that he would not get a fair trial in Sweden as rape cases there were heard behind closed doors. They also feared that if extradited to Sweden he could be handed over to Americans who want to prosecute him for publishing secret government documents.

"Those are issues that should concern any right-thinking person and the question will come to whether we should be sending people to countries which don't respect minimum human rights standards," said Mark Stephens, a senior member of Mr Assange’s legal team.

Mr Assange, who is supported by a number of high-profile public figures, says he is prepared to fight a lengthy legal battle and go right up to the European Court of Human Rights, if necessary.

A British judge last week allowed Swedish prosecutors’ request for Mr Assange to be extradited rejecting the argument that he would not get a fair trial in Sweden.

Mr Assange, who was arrested in London in December on a European arrest warrant, said the court order was ``a result of the European Arrest Warrant system run amok’’.

"There was no consideration during this entire process as to the merits of the allegations against me," he said.

The appeal process is expected to take several months.

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