December 16, 2010 / 2:43 PM / in 8 years

TIMELINE - WikiLeaks founder Assange granted bail

REUTERS - Here is a timeline of the main elements in the WikiLeaks saga as founder Julian Assange, arrested in Britain on Swedish allegations of sex crimes, was granted bail on Thursday.

Demonstrators protest outside the High Court in London December 16, 2010. London's High Court on Thursday upheld the decision to grant bail to WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange, who is fighting extradition to Sweden over allegations of sex crimes. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

April 5, 2010 - Internet group WikiLeaks releases a video showing a 2007 U.S. helicopter attack that killed a dozen people in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, including two Reuters news staff.

— Eight days later U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates criticises WikiLeaks, saying it released the video without providing any context explaining the situation.

June 7 - The U.S. military says that Army Specialist Bradley Manning, who was deployed to Baghdad, has been arrested in connection with the release of the classified video.

July 25 - More than 91,000 documents, most of which are secret U.S. military reports about the war in Afghanistan, are released by WikiLeaks.org.

— The “Afghan War Diary” is a compilation of documents and reports, covering the war in Afghanistan back to 2004.

Oct. 22 - WikiLeaks releases some 400,000 classified U.S. military files chronicling the Iraq war from 2004 through 2009, the largest leak of its kind in U.S. military history.

— They involve subjects including abuse of Iraqi prisoners in U.S. custody, Iraqi rights violations and civilian deaths.

Nov. 18 - A Swedish court orders Assange’s detention as a result of an investigation begun in September by the prosecutor’s office into allegations of rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion.

Nov. 28 - WikiLeaks releases more than 250,000 U.S. diplomatic cables that include candid views of foreign leaders and blunt assessments of security threats.

Nov. 30 - Assange’s lawyer, Bjorn Hurtig, lodges an appeal against an arrest order with Sweden’s High Court. Sweden’s court refuses permission to Assange to appeal on Dec. 2.

Dec. 7 - Assange is arrested by British police on a European warrant issued by Sweden and held in jail after a judge refuses to grant bail to the 39-year-old.

— Swedish prosecutor Marianne Ny says the sexual misconduct case against Assange is a personal matter and not connected with his work releasing secret U.S. diplomatic cables.

Dec. 8 - Australia blames the United States for the release by WikiLeaks of U.S. diplomatic cables and says Assange should not be held responsible.

Dec. 11 - A loose grouping of cyber activists supporting WikiLeaks abandons its strategy of online attacks on organisations seen as hostile to the site in favour of spreading the leaked documents far and wide online.

— Internet activists operating under the name “Anonymous” temporarily brought down the websites of credit card giants MasterCard and Visa — both of which had stopped processing donations to WikiLeaks.

Dec. 13 - Assange says in a documentary he faces prosecution by the United States and is disappointed with how Swedish justice had been abused.

Dec. 14 - A British judge grants bail of 200,000 pounds ($317,400) for the release of Assange. Prosecutors, representing Swedish authorities, quickly say they would appeal against the bail decision and Judge Howard Riddle said Assange must remain in custody until a new hearing is held within 48 hours.

Dec. 16 - London’s High Court upholds a decision and grants bail to Assange. A lawyer for Assange says that the 200,000 pound cash bond needed will be available.

Writing by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit

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