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WikiLeaks founder wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

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WikiLeaks founder wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

2024-05-21 13:49 Last Updated At:20:27

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on Monday won a victory in his ongoing battle against extradition from the United Kingdom (UK) to the United States, after the High Court in London granted him permission to appeal.

Permission to appeal was to be granted only if the U.S. government was unable to provide the court with suitable assurances that Assange can rely on the First Amendment (free speech) for protection.

The U.S. government had to prove that Assange, who is Australian, will not be prejudiced at trial due to his nationality, and will be afforded the same protections as a U.S. citizen.

The U.S. side also had to provide assurance that Assange would not be sentenced to death if convicted.

According to Assange's legal team, it could be months before the new appeal is heard.

The latest move came after the High Court deferred a decision in March on whether Assange could take his case to another appeal hearing.

Assange supporters cheered at the news of the court's ruling. He was not in court on Monday for health reasons, but those present included his wife Stella Assange.

"The judges reach the right decision. The Untied States should read the situation and drop this case now. Now, it is the moment to do it," said Stella.

"Some people have sacrificed their own freedom for that of all the other people. Some people want to expose the truth, revealing the deeds that are labeled as 'state secrets.' Indeed, it has been proven that the so-called 'state secrets' can be criminal activities, just as Julian Assange and WikiLeaks exposed at that time," said a supporter of Assange.

Assange, 52, is wanted by the U.S. for allegedly disclosing national defense information following WikiLeaks's publication of hundreds of thousands of leaked military documents relating to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars a decade ago. These included Apache helicopter video footage of the U.S. military gunning down journalists and children in the streets of Baghdad in 2007.

Assange has been held at southeast London's high-security Belmarsh Prison since 2019. The UK approved his extradition to the U.S. in 2022, after a judge had initially blocked it due to concerns over his mental health. Assange and his lawyers have subsequently appealed.

WikiLeaks founder  wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

WikiLeaks founder wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

WikiLeaks founder  wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

WikiLeaks founder wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

WikiLeaks founder  wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

WikiLeaks founder wins High Court victory in case against extradition to U.S.

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Cargo throughput surges as China's ports streamline customs clearance

2024-07-20 07:14 Last Updated At:08:27

China's border ports have been implementing a range of cargo facilitation policies, leading to a surge in cargo throughput, with a nearly 57 percent year-on-year increase in the inspection of transportation vehicles in the first half of 2024.

According to the data recently released by the National Immigration Administration, China's ports inspected about 15.42 million vehicle, vessel, and train trips in the first six months of this year, a 56.9 percent jump from the same period last year.

The border ports have rolled out a series of measures to streamline customs clearance for cargo. At major land ports, fast lanes have been set up for the rapid release of critical supplies. At major seaports, online declaration has been enabled for border inspection boarding. In international shipping, arriving vessels can have much faster departures thanks to the efficient inspections.

The combined sea-rail transport model, utilizing maritime routes and the China-Europe freight train service, has made the port of Lianyungang in east China's Jiangsu Province one of the most convenient and economical gateways to the sea. It handles more than 80 percent of Kazakhstan's transit cargo to China.

At the port, containers carrying with auto parts, home appliances, and other products are offloaded, hoisted onto trucks, and then loaded onto China-Europe freight trains bound for destinations like Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

"From unloading to boarding the freight train, the entire process can now be completed in as little as eight minutes. These containers are expected to reach the border ports within six days, greatly reducing transportation time and cost," said a logistics company employee.

The Youyi Pass in the southern Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, also known as Friendship Pass, on the China-Vietnam border is an important cross-national trade channel. To enhance the clearance efficiency of imported fruits, the port has established "durian-only" channels and green channels for agricultural products, as well as an intelligent inspection assistance system. A Chinese cargo truck can now clear customs in just 15 seconds.

As the country's largest land port for fruit imports and exports, the Youyi Pass saw fruit imports worth 23.92 billion yuan (about 3.3 billion U.S. dollars) in 2023, a 262.9-percent surge year on year.

Pattama Narmwong, chairman of the Thai Mangosteen Association, noted that the greatly improved clearance efficiency has considerably cut down on transportation time and costs, supporting the burgeoning development of fruit trade between China and Southeast Asian nations.

Cargo throughput surges as China's ports streamline customs clearance

Cargo throughput surges as China's ports streamline customs clearance

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