WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will surrender to British authorities on Friday if the UN rules against him.
In a statement on the WikiLeaks Twitter feed, Assange said he would “accept arrest” and leave the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he’s lived since 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he currently faces charges of sexual assault.
“Should the UN announce tomorrow that I have lost my case against the United Kingdom and Sweden, I shall exit the embassy at noon on Friday to accept arrest by British police, as there is no meaningful prospect of further appeal,” he said.
“However, should I prevail and the state parties be found to have acted unlawfully, I expect the immediate return of my passport and the termination of further attempts to arrest me.”
Assange and his supporters believe the rape allegations are an attempt to extradite him to the United States, where he could face charges from WikiLeaks’ publication of military and diplomatic documents, one of the largest in history.
The controversial WikiLeaks founder and his team recently made an appeal to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD), saying he “has been deprived of fundamental liberties against his will.”
“This situation does not only affect him, but also his young children who are being denied the protection and affection of their father. The situation is in urgent need of a remedy. WGAD has both the power and the duty to grant it.”
During his asylum in London, Assange has been the subject of two high-profile films in Hollywood: “The Fifth Estate,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch, and award-winning documaker Alex Gibney’s “We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks.”
Last year, WikiLeaks was back in the spotlight after posting a searchable, permanent library of Sony’s hacked e-mail documents following North Korea’s cyberattack of the studio.