WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange granted Ecuadorian nationality

12 January, 2018, 00:36 | Author: Dustin Murphy
  • Ecuadorian football shirt on Twitter

Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Maria Fernanda Espinosa said on Tuesday that her country is searching for a "third country or a personality" to mediate a solution to the case of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Mr Assange, 46, breached bail conditions when he sought political refuge at the Ecuadorean embassy, while facing sexual assault allegations in Sweden.

The UK has turned down a request from Ecuador to grant diplomatic status to Julian Assange - as a means of breaking a longstanding deadlock over his fate.

Reuters reported it had found an entry for "Julian Paul Assange" in Ecuador's civilian registry.

"What naturalisation does is provide the asylum seeker another layer of protection", Espinosa said.

Not only is it hard having a permanent asylum seeker in the very small embassy, it leaves Ecuador with tricky diplomatic relations with all the other countries involved - the United Kingdom, the U.S. and Sweden.

He was also a point of contention in Ecuador's 2017 presidential election.


The Ecuadorian government has become entirely fed up with the dispute over Assange's status as it's dragged on, calling the dispute "untenable". The WikiLeaks chief believes that the USA government is seeking his extradition and prosecution.

Ecuador asks London to recognize Assange as a diplomat, which would give him immunity from arrest.

Any mediated deal between Ecuador and the United Kingdom would likely have to address Mr Assange's concerns. Were he to step one foot outside the embassy walls, he would find himself handcuffed and bundled away by the Metropolitan Police.

Assange, who denies the rape allegations, fears that if he is arrested he will be handed over to the United States to face prosecution over WikiLeaks' publication of thousands of classified military and diplomatic documents in one of the largest information leaks in USA history.

Moreno issued a warning reminding Assange not to meddle in politics.

This sparks speculation that Assange is about to end his self-imposed exile.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, responding to a reporter's question in April about whether arresting Assange was a priority, said it was. Moreno issued a public demand that Assange not interfere in the politics of "nations that are our friends".

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