Former US National Security Agency contractor and whistleblower Edward Snowden has taken to Twitter to comment on the new US indictment against Julian Assange, saying that the case no longer refers to the WikiLeaks co-founder alone.
— Edward Snowden (@Snowden) 23 мая 2019 г.
Under the new charges, Assange is accused of receiving and unlawfully publishing the names of classified sources. If he is found guilty of these charges he may face over 170 years in prison since each of the alleged 17 violations of the Espionage Act carries a potential 10-year prison term, The Washington Post reported. The paper adds that it is the first time in US history that a person dealing with investigative journalism is being charged under this act.
WikiLeaks has also reacted to the news about extra charges against Assange, expressing its outrage over Washington's decision.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) 23 мая 2019 г.
Julian Assange was arrested in London on 11 April. He was sentenced to 50 weeks in a UK prison for breaching his bail conditions back in 2012, when he took refuge at the Ecuadorian Embassy to avoid extradition to Sweden over sexual assault charges and further extradition to the US for leaking classified data.