Thursday, 18 April, 2019

Julian Assange's war of words with Ecuadorian government

John Shipton READ ONAssange's father calls on Australia to bring him home
Jeannette Daniel | 15 April, 2019, 19:10

"The key issue at the moment is United States extradition, which we have warned about for many years", she added.

The Australian had spent seven years at the embassy fighting extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted over sexual assault allegations made against him.

Jennifer Robinson told Sky News on Sunday that Ecuador is making "pretty outrageous allegations" to justify allowing British police into its embassy on Thursday in order to take Assange into custody.

They also accused the Ecuadoran government of "engaging in a disinformation and slander campaign against Assange" after a series of reports emerged detailing his increasingly disfunctional relationship with embassy staff.

Assange was forcibly removed from the embassy last week by British police after Ecuador revoked his political asylum and was quickly found guilty by a British court of breaching his bail conditions related to allegations of rape he faced in Sweden in 2012.

Speaking to the Guardian, President Moreno claimed Ecuador's old government provided facilities within the embassy "to interfere" with other states.

Julian Assange, dressed in a vest and shorts, skateboards around his bedroom in the Ecuadorian embassy.

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Should Stockholm make a request to extradite Assange, the UK government will have to consider whether this should be done before or after that of the United States, where the 47-year-old is fighting a USA extradition warrant relating to the release by WikiLeaks of a huge cache of official documents.

Ecuador's President Lenin Moreno has defended his decision to remove Assange's asylum status last week claiming he 'repeatedly violated his asylum conditions.' The president made references to Assange's apparently poor hygiene, following allegations made by Ecuador's interior minister Maria Paula Romo.

(Frank Augstein/Frank Augstein/AP, FILE) WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange greets supporters from a balcony of the Ecuadorian embassy in London, May 19, 2017.

More than 70 MPs have also urged the Government to ensure Assange faces Swedish authorities if they request his extradition.

Extradition to the United States would set "a unsafe precedent" for journalists worldwide, said Miranda, adding: "this threatens to criminalise journalism globally".

The Ecuadorean president also said that the health of Assange, 47, ...

He took refuge at the Ecuadorian embassy in 2012 and had been "in hiding" there until last week when he was forced to leave by the United Kingdom police. In the meantime, he is expected to seek prison medical care for severe shoulder pain and dental problems, WikiLeaks has said.

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