Ecuador wants As­sange gone

The Maui News - - WORLD -

QUITO, Ecuador — Ecuador’s pres­i­dent has ramped up pres­sure on Ju­lian As­sange to leave his coun­try’s em­bassy in Lon­don, say­ing that Bri­tain had pro­vided suf­fi­cient guar­an­tees that the Wik­iLeaks founder won’t be ex­tra­dited to face the death penalty.

Lenin Moreno’s com­ments in a ra­dio in­ter­view Thurs­day sug­gest that months of quiet diplo­macy be­tween the U.K. and Ecuador to re­solve As­sange’s sit­u­a­tion is bear­ing fruit at a time when ques­tions are swirling about the for­mer Aus­tralian hacker’s le­gal fate in the U.S.

Moreno didn’t say he would force As­sange out, but said the ac­tivist’s le­gal team is con­sid­er­ing its next steps.

As­sange has been holed up in the Ecuado­rian em­bassy since 2012, when he was granted asy­lum while fac­ing al­le­ga­tions of sex crimes in Swe­den that he said were a guise to ex­tra­dite him to the U.S.

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