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Sweden drops investigation against Assange

Julian Assange will still be arrested if he leaves Ecuadorian embassy in London, according to the UK police

OSLO, May 19. /TASS/. The Swedish Prosecutor’s Office has decided to drop an investigation against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and recommended the court to cancel an earlier issued warrant for his arrest, according to the prosecutors’ statement released on Friday.

"Chief Prosecutor Marianne Ny has decided to terminate the preliminary investigation into the suspected rape concerning Julian Assange," the statement said. 

Julian Assange will still be arrested if he leaves the Ecuadorian embassy, British police have confirmed.

A spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police said that despite Sweden's European arrest warrant for the WikiLeaks founder being lifted, he was under a separate warrant for skipping bail. 

"Westminster Magistrates' Court issued a warrant for the arrest of Julian Assange following him failing to surrender to the court on the 29 June 2012," a statement said. "The Metropolitan Police Service is obliged to execute that warrant should he leave the Embassy."

This decision was announced following Assange’s questioning held in November last year on the territory of the Ecuadorian embassy in London. 

Assange will no longer face the threat of his extradition to Sweden, unless the Swedish Prosecutor’s Office initiates a new probe against him. However, the UK authorities may now receive a direct request from the United States for Assange’s extradition.

WikiLeaks founder Assange requested asylum at the Ecuadorian embassy in London on June 19, 2012 to avoid his extradition to Sweden over rape and sexual assault allegations. Assange has rejected all the accusations, calling them politically motivated. The Australian fears that Sweden will deport him to the US where he faces up to 35 years in prison or death penalty for having published secret documents of the US Department of State.