(Some people at the time felt that this was not fair as the US test is arguably a tougher one but arguably that just reflects the country's domestic arrest policies being different. In any case, the UK refuses far more US extradition requests than vice versa. If you want to read 400 pages on this, the Baker Extradition review which also covers the European Arrest Warrant and the Prima Facie test is available online.)
and as context, albeit very long ago, I might aswell mention the most known case:
Along with the myth of not being "in" country X when you're in airside transit on an international-international itinerary through an airport there.
So by the dictionary definition of sovereignty -- "supreme power or authority" the sovereign inside the walls of the embassy is Ecuador, not the UK, since the UK has no de facto authority there. But by the definition of "sovereignty" applied to issues of land ownership, the interior space of the building is technically still British and would revert back to enforceable UK legal jurisdiction when the mission is over.
So really you could argue it either way.
If international treaty obligations block sovereignty, then the UK isn't sovereign within the UK either (!), since there are certainly international treaties signed by the UK which prevent the UK authorities doing certain things within the UK. For example, the UK authorities cannot usually arrest diplomats, regardless of whether or not the diplomat is in an embassy.
Yup. International treaties are an exchange of sovereignty for something else. The general public imagine that XIX-century-style nation states still exist, but they haven't for a long time. I suspect the USA's rhetoric of patriotism, especially post-9/11 exacerbates this view. Even the USA shares a lot of its sovereignty with external entities (gasp!).
The only XIX-century-style nation state left might be North Korea, FWIW.
That's an invalid pretext.
His "pre-text" wasn't that he feared the UK would extradite him to the US, but that the UK would extradite him to Sweden, which would extradite him to the UK. So he was fearful of Sweden, not the UK. You can say that this is stupid or even claim he cannot genuinely believe that and is therefore disingenuous, but unless a true mindreader shows up, we cannot know what he thought and feared, really.
True - I'd forgotten that part.
In any case - the case was reopened in November 2010, and Assange didn't enter the embassy until June 2012. If this truly was some sort of grand conspiracy to get him extradited to the US, I'd imagine the CIA has more reliable and straightforward methods of arresting/disappearing someone.
In addition to the above, EU law forbids extradition chains (Assange extradited from the UK -> Sweden, and then Sweden -> US) without explicit permissions from all involved countries.
Probably, but there are likely extreme hurdles to such "disappearing" of well known persons (especially those who are not universally hated). Having the technical capability is one thing. Effectively acknowledging its use in a mostly friendly, sovereign country is a very different matter.
Edit: yep, arrest warrant supposedly issued in December 2017 over his work with Manning back in 2010.
If the goal is deterrence, he works just as well as a symbol rotting in the Ecuadorian embassy as either dead or rotting in jail.
I assume you mean "extradite him to the US"
Why would Sweden extradite him to the U.S. when the UK wouldn't?
Either way, he promised the UK courts he wouldn't flee. Then he fled. Now he's been arrested for skipping bail. Good. Everytime someone skips bail, it makes it harder for innocent people to get bail when they are charged with crimes they didn't commit.
I don't know what he was thinking? Maybe he had memories of Pinochet not being extradited from the UK? Maybe he had memories of the Swedes doing the bidding of the US re:thepiratebay?
Yes, I'm sure many people have been "more tortured" by the US government (or other governments) than Chelsea Manning -- but it doesn't change the fact she was tortured.