After Swedish prosecutors dropped an investigation into #Julian #Assange's Swedish rape allegations, the activist declared “the proper war is just commencing”. This marks the beginning of the end of a complicated and difficult seven-year extradition battle for the #Wikileaks founder, but it also leaves substantial questions unanswered as he continues on his quest for freedom.

If he does leave the embassy, #Assange must still confront an arrest placed against him for breaching his bail conditions. According to the Metropolitan police, there is also the possibility that the US will seek Assange's extradition over his organization WikiLeaks’ publishing activities that have revealed massive amounts of sensitive US data and intelligence.

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Swedish prosecutor speaks out

On Friday #Marianne Ny, #Sweden’s director of public prosecutions, took to the media to announce that Sweden won't pursue the investigation into a 2010 rape claim by a young woman in Stockholm. The woman, according to her lawyer, was shocked that the case wouldn't be properly concluded and has expressed dismay at the methods used to free Assange from justice.

Ny declared that she hadn't made her decision based on any judgment concerning guilt or innocence but rather because prosecutors had ultimately decided that “all prospects of pursuing the investigation under present circumstances are exhausted”. She added that if the #Wikileaks founder were to make himself available to the courts in Sweden that she would immediately resume the investigation.

On Friday, #Assange came out in person onto the Ecuadoran embassy's balcony in London where he had gone to seek asylum in 2012 in order to escape extradition to Sweden.

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He spoke about the period he has been detained there as a “terrible injustice” and spoke of how his children had grown up for seven years without their father. "That is not something I can forgive. That is not something I can forget,” he added emotionally. He also spoke of Friday's announcement as a crucial victory in the fight he has dedicated his life to in the name of justice and truth.

#Assange then raised his fist and added that the recent threats made by the #United States – that he may be arrested on espionage charges – won't be tolerated. He also declared that #Wikileaks is going to escalate its leaks about the CIA in the coming months.

July 2012 and the court battles in UK

In July 2012, after losing court battles in the United Kingdom to avoid #extradition to Sweden, Assange appealed to Ecuador for asylum. In 2015, a second Swedish woman came forward with another claim of sexual assault but Swedish authorities dropped this claim after the expiration of the statute of limitations.

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Assange has continuously and strenuously denied the allegations that were launched against him in Sweden.

As he stood before the press and some supporters on Friday, Assange conveyed that today was a big victory and a vindication but that “the road is far from over. The proper war is just commencing." Assange then explained how the CIA director Mike Pompeo and #Jeff Sessions, the US attorney general, have declared that Wikileaks staff and Assange will have #no rights and will be arrested with the utmost priority.

Assange said that this United States bullying was not acceptable. He added that the Wikileaks publications are proceeding at speed that is accelerating. He also added that he was happy to engage in productive dialog with the United States even though some "extremely threatening remarks" have been made.

Assange, however, did appear more conciliatory in tone when he said that his legal team are hoping to engage in a productive dialogue with the UK authorities on how best to move forward.