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UK approves WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s extradition to U.S.

The U.K. has approved the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to the U.S., where he is wanted over the publication of hundreds of thousands of classified military documents and diplomatic cables.

The deportation was approved Friday by U.K. Home Secretary Priti Patel following a series of failed legal battles in British courts. However, a number of appeal routes remain open to Assange, who has 14 days to challenge the decision.

Assange is wanted by U.S. authorities on 18 counts, including a spying charge, relating to WikiLeaks’ release in 2010 and 2011 of vast troves of confidential U.S. military records and diplomatic cables, which they claim had put lives in danger.

“On 17 June, following consideration by both the Magistrates Court and High Court, the extradition of Mr Julian Assange to the US was ordered. Mr Assange retains the normal 14-day right to appeal,” a U.K. Home Office spokesperson said.

“In this case, the UK courts have not found that it would be oppressive, unjust or an abuse of process to extradite Mr Assange. Nor have they found that extradition would be incompatible with his human rights, including his right to a fair trial and to freedom of expression, and that whilst in the US he will be treated appropriately, including in relation to his health.”

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