The Papers: ‘Dishevelled’ Assange and Meghan baby pic plan | - South Africa News

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Image caption Several papers lead with the big story of the day – the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who has been living in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012. He sought refuge there to avoid extradition to Sweden over a sexual assault case that has since been dropped. Assange appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court and was found guilty of breaching his bail. He could now be extradited to the US to face a computer hacking charge. The FT says his arrest ends “a seven-year saga that pitted global authorities against one of the most controversial transparency advocates”.
Image caption The Metro puts two contrasting photos of Assange on its front page – one from 2011, before he entered the Ecuadorian embassy, and another taken yesterday of a bearded Assange making a peace sign as he was driven away. The paper says he shouted loudly as he was “dragged” from the embassy.
Image caption The Guardian is more sympathetic to Assange compared to some papers, reporting that he is facing up to five years in prison in the US if he is extradited there for the conspiracy charge. Calculating the number of days that Assange spent holed up in the embassy (2,487), the paper says he also faces up to 12 months in a British prison for the charge he was found guilty of on Thursday.
Image caption But the Times suggests that Assange could be jailed for “decades” in the US, reporting that he is expected to face “dozens more charges” if he is extradited. Espionage can carry a 20-year sentence, the paper says. Meanwhile, the paper also reports that the DUP has been holding private talks with Brexiteer MP Boris Johnson “and his Tory leadership campaign team”.
Image caption The Daily Mail also claims US prosecutors are reportedly set to file more charges. The paper chooses a picture of Assange in a police van, winking and making a thumbs up sign, and suggests he will soon stop smiling. The paper says that, as Assange was arrested, he shouted: “The UK has no civility”. It adds that the Ecuadorian government ended his asylum status after becoming fed up of his “discourteous” behaviour and poor personal hygiene.
Image caption The i newspaper’s front page also carries the photo of Assange winking. It says the Ecuadorian embassy invited the police round after “losing patience with their lodger”. But the paper says the arrest has ignited a political row, after Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called on the government not to extradite Assange.
Image caption While most papers choose to lead with a non-Brexit story for the first time in days, the Daily Express splashes with the latest on the deadlock. The paper criticises MPs for beginning their Easter break, saying: “We want Brexit!” On Wednesday, Theresa May continued to urge MPs to back her Brexit deal, saying it was their “national duty”.
Image caption Also leading with Brexit, the Daily Telegraph reports that the government’s plans for a no-deal scenario have been shelved now that a delay to 31 October has been agreed. The paper says that there is “mounting pressure” from Mrs May’s own MPs, ministers and the DUP for her to name a date for her to quit.
Image caption The Daily Star compares the appearance of bearded Assange to that of character Uncle Albert from comedy programme Only Fools and Horses and asks the question “Who’s nicked Uncle Albert?”. The paper’s top story, rather neatly, is about such classic TV comedies. The Star claims that, following its own campaign, the BBC is in talks to link up with Sky and Channel 4 to create the British Comedy Foundation.
Image caption According to the Daily Mirror, the Duchess of Sussex will not be doing a traditional photocall outside the hospital when she gives birth to her baby, due later this month. The Mirror quotes a source as saying: “They don’t want any distractions”. Instead, Prince Harry and Meghan are expected to share the first picture of their newborn on their Instagram page, which broke a world record for the fastest time to reach more than one million followers.
Image caption Friday’s Sun also leads with a story on Meghan and Harry – but on reports that the couple have “infuriated” royal staff by banning them from using a car park “because it overlooks their new home”. A senior source at Windsor Castle told the Sun that the couple had not demanded the change. They added that the car park would not be closed completely but just let in fewer people, adding that the decision was made as a result of a review by the superintendent of the castle.

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