Rights advocates welcome Assange’s release but say US case sets worrying precedent

Jullian Assage

U.S. authorities in 2019 charged Assange on 18 criminal counts of conspiring with former U.S. Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to obtain classified information and unlawfully publishing the names of classified sources.

Several rights groups, leading media organizations and the leaders of countries like Mexico, Brazil and Australia had urged that the charges against Assange be dropped.

Among those who welcomed his release were the advocacy group Committee to Protect Journalists and free speech organization Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University.

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