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Julian Assange

Founder WikiLeaks

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Julian Assange

Founder WikiLeaks

Biography

Julian Assange is founder of WikiLeaks which came to global prominence in 2010 when it published a series of leaks provided by Chelsea Manning.

In 1993, Assange gave technical advice to the Victoria Police Child Exploitation Unit and assisted with prosecutions. In the same year, he was involved in starting one of the first public Internet service providers in Australia, Suburbia Public Access Network. He then began programming, authoring or co-authoring the Transmission Control Protocol port scanner strobe.c. 

In 2006, Assange found WikiLeaks in the belief that the free exchange of information would put an end to illegitimate governance.  In 2010, a request was made for Assange's extradition to Sweden, where he had been questioned over allegations of assault.  Assange continued to deny the allegations, and expressed concern that he would be extradited from Sweden to the US because of his perceived role in publishing secret US documents.  In 2017, Sweden said it would drop its investigation of Assange.

Assange surrendered himself to UK police in 2010. Having been unsuccessful in his challenge to the extradition proceedings, he breached his bail and absconded.  He was granted asylum by Ecuador. He has since remained in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London, but is now free to leave anytime but will be arrested for the criminal offence of breaching his UK bail conditions.

In 2011 Assange was awarded the Sydney Peace Foundation’s gold medal, an honour that had previously been bestowed on Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama, for his “exceptional courage in pursuit of human rights.”

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