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Assange moved to isolation in jail

Police moved WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange to the segregation unit of a London jail for his safety, his lawyer said today as new cables showed the US suspects Myanmar has a secret nuclear programme.

world Updated: Dec 11, 2010 07:31 IST

Police moved WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange to the segregation unit of a London jail for his safety, his lawyer said today as new cables showed the US suspects Myanmar has a secret nuclear programme.

The 39-year-old Australian has been transferred from the main part of Wandsworth prison to an isolation unit, said Jennifer Robinson, one of Assange's legal team.

"The prison authorities are doing it for his own safety, presumably," she said.

Assange is due to appear in a London court for a second time Tuesday after being arrested on a warrant issued by Sweden, where prosecutors want to speak to him about allegations of rape and sexual molestation made by two women.

WikiLeaks insists the allegations are politically motivated because the whistleblowing website has enraged Washington and governments around the world by releasing thousands of US diplomatic cables.

Robinson complained that Assange "does not get any recreation" in the prison and "has difficulties getting phone calls out... he is on his own."

Assange, a former computer hacker, is not allowed to have a laptop computer in his cell, but his lawyers have requested one.

"We are trying to prepare a legal appeal and he has difficulties hand writing, so it would be much easier in order to assist us in the preparation if he had a laptop," Robinson said, although she did not elaborate on why he had difficulties writing.