'Enough is enough': PM Assange call as Biden gives hope

"Enough is enough," Anthony Albanese has declared, following indications the US is considering dropping charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

The prime minister said it was time to end the long-running saga after US president Joe Biden responded with "we are considering it" when asked for his response to Australian requests to end the pursuit of Assange.

"We've used all of our diplomatic efforts at every level to communicate that it is time that this was brought to a close, enough is enough," Mr Albanese told Sky News on Thursday.

President Joe Biden with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida
President Joe Biden said he was considering Australia's request to drop the prosecution of Assange.

"I'm increasingly optimistic about an outcome but one has not been delivered yet.

"We'll continue to argue the case at every opportunity that we have."

US prosecutors want to try Assange on 18 counts, mainly under the Espionage Act, over WikiLeaks' release in 2010 of confidential US military records and diplomatic cables.

Assange is fighting extradition in the UK High Court to avoid facing espionage charges in the US.

The court in March said the US had to provide assurances Assange would not face the death penalty.

"These are complex issues because of the separation of powers between the political system and the judiciary," the prime minister said.

"We continue to use avenues at out disposal, as we do in speaking out for Australian citizens."

Mr Albanese in February backed a parliamentary motion moved by Independent MP Andrew Wilkie calling for Assange's return to Australia.

Mr Wilkie, a long-time advocate for Assange, said Mr Biden's comment was heartening.

"Obviously very encouraging - so long as they were considered remarks and not just a passing comment, then I think we can get some comfort from the fact that the US government is listening to the Australian government," he told ABC Radio.

"Regardless of what (Australians) think of Julian Assange personally, and regardless of what they think WikiLeaks did many years ago, I think most people now say this has gone on long enough and the US should drop the charges."

The Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance has written to Mr Albanese and Foreign Minister Penny Wong urging them to publicly call upon the US government to drop its charges against the WikiLeaks founder.

The alliance's letter to the government on Thursday comes on the fifth anniversary of Assange’s detention in the UK.

"As we draw closer to the US presidential election (in November), the opportunity for a satisfactory resolution to this case diminishes," federal president Karen Percy said.

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