Amnesty International called on the Swedish authorities on September 27 to issue assurances to WikiLeaks' founder-in-chief Julian Assange that if he leaves Ecuador’s London embassy and agrees to go to Sweden to face sexual assault claims, he will not be extradited to the United States in connection with WikiLeaks.
The statement came after Assange addressed the United Nations General Assembly and amid talks between British and Ecuadorian authorities over the fate of Assange — who is holed up in Ecuador's embassy as Britian seeks to extradite him to Sweden.
Nicola Duckworth, a researcher at Amnesty International, said: “If the Swedish authorities are able to confirm publicly that Assange will not eventually find himself on a plane to the United States if he submits himself to the authority of the Swedish courts, then this will hopefully achieve two things.
“First, it will break the current impasse, and second, it will mean the women who have leveled accusations of sexual assault are not denied justice. It is vital that states show they are serious about dealing with allegations of sexual violence and that they respect both the rights of the women who made the complaints and the person accused.”
Amnesty said fears about Assange being extradited from Sweden to the US have played no small part in the current stand-off.
Amnesty said it believes the forced transfer of Assange to the US would expose him to a real risk of serious human rights violations, “possibly including violation of his right to freedom of expression and the risk that he may be held in detention in conditions which violate the prohibition of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment”.