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Assange takes refuge in Ecuador’s London embassy

WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange granted asylum by Ecuador

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been granted political asylum by the Ecuadorian government.

Assange took refuge in Ecuador’s London embassy whilst fighting extradition from the UK.

He took refuge at the embassy in June to avoid extradition to Sweden to face questioning over assault and rape claims.

The WikiLeaks website founded by Assange is famed for releasing a vast trove of leaked US intelligence online in 2010, which included material that caused embarrassment to the US, foreign governments, businesses and some members of royalty.

Ecuadorian foreign minister Ricardo Patino said extensive talks were held with the UK to seek assurances that he would not be extradited to a third country, but that the UK failed to give such promises.

The US government could request its own extradition under US espionage laws if Assange’s extradition to Sweden goes ahead, but UK authorities must approve a US extradition from Sweden should that happen.

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