Julian Assange Is Running For Office In Australia

While, of course, being trapped in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.

Andrew Winning / Reuters

Assange in Westminster on February 2, 2012.

Julian Assange, who recently marked one year of living in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, announced Thursday that he’s running for Australian Senate as part of the newly launched WikiLeaks Party.

From the party’s press release:

WikiLeaks Party will act as an independent scrutineer of government activity “by ensuring that the Senate is acting independently of the government of the day,” according to Mr Assange who will details the core principles of the party —Transparency. Accountability. Justice — as well as the details of the Party’s policies on asylum seekers and climate change.

Running a political party is “not unlike running the WikiLeaks organization,” Assange told the New York Times. “However, it’s nice to be politically engaged in my home country.”

But will he be able to be politically engaged while trapped in London, where police are ready to arrest him the moment he steps out of the embassy building?

Under Australian law, Mr. Assange would have to take his seat within one year of being elected, although the Senate could technically grant him an extension if he is unable to physically take his seat …

“There is, of course, some possibility that the Australian Senate would permit remote involvement. It’s never been done before, but it is theoretically possible,” Mr. Assange said. “But in any event we have candidates available to hold the seat until such time as I am available to take it.”

On Thursday, six more WikiLeaks candidates for Senate seats throughout the country were also announced: author and activist Leslie Cannold, law teacher Binoy Kampmark, lawyer and activist Kellie Tranter, academic and former Australian Foreign Service member Alison Broinowski, activist Gerry Georgatos, and economist Suresh Rajan.

Election Day is Sept. 14.

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