No special treatment from us: Aussie PM

SYDNEY • WikiLeaks founder and Australian citizen Julian Assange will receive "no special treatment" from his home country following his dramatic arrest in Britain, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said yesterday.

Mr Morrison said Assange would receive the same support as any other Australian in trouble overseas, and the extradition is a "matter for the US".

"Well it's got nothing to do with us. It has got to do with the United States," he told national broadcaster ABC. "There's a judicial process, and that will be followed across a range of matters here and I would expect that to follow. He will receive the same consular support as any other Australians would in these circumstances."

United States President Donald Trump, who repeatedly praised WikiLeaks for releasing damaging material on Mrs Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential race, on Thursday sought to disavow his past enthusiasm following Assange's arrest.

"I know nothing about WikiLeaks," Mr Trump told reporters.

"It's not my thing. I know there is something to do with Julian Assange. I've been seeing what's happened with Assange. And that will be a determination, I imagine, mostly by the attorney-general."

NBC News tallied that Mr Trump had cited WikiLeaks 141 times at 56 events in the last month of his 2016 campaign.

 

"WikiLeaks, I love WikiLeaks," he said at one such event.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, WASHINGTON POST

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 13, 2019, with the headline 'No special treatment from us: Aussie PM'. Print Edition | Subscribe