WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was arbitrarily detained by Britain and Sweden for more than five years, according to a United Nations rights panel, which said in a report on Friday that the two countries should restore his freedom of movement and compensate him. The working group found that:
• His detention was arbitrary because of “a substantial failure to exercise due diligence” by both governments, in particular Swedish prosecutors;
• Five years after issuing an arrest warrant, Swedish prosecutors had not still pressed charges;
• Prosecutors didn’t show Mr. Assange the evidence collected against him or give him a chance to respond;
• Prosecutors should have taken more seriously Mr. Assange’s fears of possible extradition to the United States.
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Sheila Samples is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information Officer. She is a Managing Editor for OpEd News, and a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.