Stockholm: A Swedish court has rejected efforts to postpone a hearing relating to Julian Assange, a lawyer for the WikiLeaks founder says.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.Credit:AP
A Swedish prosecutor this month filed a request for Assange to be detained for a June 3 hearing about a rape allegation.
Defence lawyer Per Samuelson told Reuters he visited Assange in British custody on Friday before seeking to postpone the hearing.
"One of the reasons is that Assange's health situation on Friday was such that it was not possible to conduct a normal conversation with him," Samuelson said.
"I meant that it should be postponed until I had time to meet again and go through the issues in peace and quiet. I suggested no specific date and meant it should be postponed until everything was ready, but the district court has now decided that this won't happen."
The Uppsala district court, where the hearing is due to take place, was not immediately available for comment. A prosecutors' office spokesman declined to comment.
Sweden reopened the investigation into alleged rape, which Assange denies, in early May. It was begun in 2010 but dropped in 2017 while Assange was in refuge in Ecuador's London embassy.
Assange was arrested in London last month after spending nearly seven years inside the embassy.
If the court order is granted, it would be the first step in a process to have Assange extradited from Britain, where he is serving a 50-week sentence for skipping bail.
US authorities are separately seeking to extradite Assange on charges relating to the public release by WikiLeaks of a cache of secret documents, and last week unveiled 17 new criminal charges against him, including espionage.
The British courts will have to rule on the two extradition requests, with the home secretary having the final say on which one takes precedence.
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