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US submits extradition request for WikiLeaks founder Assange

The 47-year-old faces an 18-count indictment accusing him of soliciting and publishing classified information.

Julian Assange (Victoria Jones/PA)
Julian Assange (Victoria Jones/PA)

The United States government has formally submitted an extradition request to the UK for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, according to US officials.

Assange faces an 18-count indictment that accuses him of soliciting and publishing classified information and of conspiring with former US army private Chelsea Manning to crack a US defence department computer password.

The 47-year-old was evicted on April 11 from the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he had been holed up since 2012 after Ecuador granted him political asylum.

He was arrested by UK police and is currently serving a 50-week sentence for jumping bail in 2012.

Assange is also wanted in Sweden for questioning about an alleged rape, which he denies.

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