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Mr Assange's lawyers last night revealed they were considering defamation action against Julia Gillard after she accused the embattled Australian of "illegal" conduct over his mass leak of secret US documents. Mr Assange's British solicitor, Mark Stephens, told The Australian his client would today seek formal consular assistance from Australian authorities in Britain and Sweden. Mr Stephens declined to say where his client was, but added that both British and Swedish authorities could contact him for questioning any time they chose.
Mr Stephens criticised the Prime Minister, who last week accused Mr Assange of acting illegally, without specifying precisely what he had done.
Those comments, made outside parliament and hence not subject to parliamentary privilege, were now being examined by Mr Assange's legal team, Mr Stephens said.