News World Julian Assange ‘considering’ testifying in Russian probe

Julian Assange ‘considering’ testifying in Russian probe

Julian Assange
Julian Assange is considering speaking to US officials over Russia's election meddling. Photo: Getty
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WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is reportedly “considering” a request by a US Senate Committee to testify over Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 US elections, the whistleblowing website says.

WikiLeaks revealed on Thursday morning (AEST) the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence had sent a letter to Mr Assange, asking him to “make yourself available for a closed interview with bipartisan committee staff at a mutually agreeable time and location”.

WikiLeaks’ legal team released statement saying they were “considering the offer, but the conditions must conform to a high ethical standard”.

If Mr Assange agrees to the interview, US intelligence officials are likely to focus on his role in the publication of emails from then-Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the lead up to the 2016 presidential election.

US intelligence officials blame Russian military intelligence for stealing the documents before they were passed on to  WikiLeaks.

WikiLeaks knowingly acted in concert with Russian intelligence, the committee claimed.

Wikileaks has denied that the source of the material was the Russian government, while stressing it will never reveal where it gets its information.

The Senate Committee letter, dated August 1, was delivered to Mr Assange via the US embassy in London.

Mr Assange, who is currently living in the Ecuadoran embassy in the UK capital, has previously claimed a political smear linked to WikiLeaks’ work.

He fears he could be transferred  to the US to face trial for the release of leaked military documents if he leaves the embassy.

Mr Assange has sought political asylum since 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden over rape allegations but remains in the Ecuadoran embassy despite the investigation being dropped.

He also still faces arrest by British police for skipping bail six years ago.

-with agencies

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