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Assange deserves 'humane and fair treatment': Labor

Julian Assange is entitled to "humane and fair treatment" the federal government says, as the WikiLeaks founder won a small victory in his fight to avoid extradition to the United States.

Plans by American prosecutors to extradite the 52-year-old from the United Kingdom and put him on trial for the release of confidential US military records and diplomatic cables have been put on hold after London's High Court on Tuesday said US authorities must provide assurances he will not face the death penalty.

Two UK High Court judges said they would grant Assange, who has been held in a London high-security prison since 2019, a new appeal if US authorities do not give such assurances within three weeks.

Cabinet Minister Michelle Rowland said the government continued to work closely with his legal team.

"Mr Assange is entitled due process, to humane and fair treatment, access to proper medical care and legal representation," she told ABC radio.

"We acknowledge the ruling, we'll continue to monitor it and provide consular assistance."

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said last month his government was using diplomatic channels to try to secure Assange's release and had raised the issue with US President Joe Biden.

"We want to see the Australian government continue to push for a political resolution because Julian will remain in Belmarsh Prison ... and his circumstances there have been dire, his health continues to decline and this at the end of the day is a political case," lawyer Greg Barnes SC told ABC TV.

Amnesty International Legal Adviser Simon Crowther said US assurances that it would not violate Assange's rights were "deeply flawed".

"The US must stop its politically motivated prosecution of Assange, which puts Assange and media freedom at risk worldwide," he said.

Mr Barnes said "people shouldn't be extradited to the United States if there's a risk of cruel and unusual punishment".

The UK judges provisionally gave Assange permission to launch a full appeal against extradition as it was not certain the Australian would be entitled to rely on the US constitution's right to free speech as a foreigner.

Stella Assange described the UK court's decision regarding her husband as "bizarre".

"The court's recognised that Julian is exposed to a flagrant denial of his freedom of expression rights, that he is being discriminated against on the basis of his nationality - an Australian - and that he remains exposed to the death penalty," Ms Assange said.

"What the courts have done has been to invite a political intervention from the United States ... send a letter saying 'Its all okay'. I find this astounding," she told reporters.

Independent MP Andrew Wilkie said he hoped a new appeal will be successful.

"The US must not continue to pursue Mr Assange but instead drop all charges against him, allow him to reunite with his family and to return to Australia," he said.

with Reuters and AP