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Assange granted bail after hearing on Tuesday

by Jorge Hernandez on December 14, 2010

In a statement read by his mother, jailed Wikileaks founder Julian Assange asserted that his commitment to his ideals is unwavering and criticized Mastercard, Visa and PayPal for being "instruments of U.S. foreign policy," The Associated Press reports.

Assange's mother read the statement to the Sunshine Coast Daily after speaking with her son, who was granted $315,000 bail on Tuesday morning after he appeared in court. He will be taken into custody by former British Army officer Vaughn Smith, who offered to keep Assange at his mansion for the time being. However, he is still fighting for extradition to Sweden.

Many of Assange's supporters believe that his detention is in response to the Wikileaks' disclosure of embarrassing details surrounding the United States foreign policy earlier this month. Swedish authorities claim that the case is not motivated by Wikileaks but others contend that the fact that the Australian's arrest coincided with the release is suspicious.

Still, Swedish authorities claim that Wikileaks was not taken into account when charges were pressed. before they hearing they suggested that Assange should be denied bail. They added that his minimal ties to Great Britain made him a serious flight risk. Assange's charges include rape, sexual molestation and illegal use of force. He face up to two years in prison of convicted.

"It is too much of a coincidence," protester Alex Potterill, 33, told the news source. "This is an attack on the valuable work of WikiLeaks. It is an attempt to gag a valuable source of information."

Although Assange has been in prison since December 7, there have continued to be leaks that have angered U.S. officials. Supporters have also targeted the websites of Mastercard and PayPal, which severed ties with Wikileaks after Assange began disclosing sensitive information.

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