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Pressure Mounts on WikiLeaks as Net Tightens Around Founder Julian Assange

Tuesday 07 December 2010

‘What happened around 13 August this year appears about to catch up with the 39-year-old Australian who is expected to hand himself to the British authorities over allegations made by two women which have seen him charged by Swedish prosecutors of rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion. The claims related to two women who said they had met Assange in connection with a seminar he gave in the Swedish capital on 14 August.

The women filed their complaints together six days later, on Friday 20 August. The allegations stem from claims that Assange had sex with the two women on separate occasions and reportedly centre on his willingness or otherwise to use condoms. His lawyer, Mark Stephens, last night summed up the issue as a “dispute over consensual but unprotected sex”.

Speaking anonymously, one of the two women involved told the Swedish daily newspaper, Aftonbladet, she had never intended Assange to be charged with rape and that both women had had voluntary relations with him. “He is not violent and I do not feel threatened by him,” she reportedly said. “The responsibility for what happened to me and the other girl lies with a man who had attitude problems with women”.’

Read more: Pressure Mounts on WikiLeaks as Net Tightens Around Founder Julian Assange