Julian Assange could be expelled from the Ecuadorian embassy ‘within hours,’ WikiLeaks claims.
“The UK authorities are standing by to arrest him in the event that he is expelled.” Wikileaks‘ Julian Assange could be expelled from the Ecuadorian Embassy, according to reports. Victoria Smith detailing on social media .
WikiLeaks claimed in a tweet that the Ecuadorian state has an agreement with UK authorities for its founder’s arrest when he is removed from the embassy.
Assange has been in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012 after he sought refuge there when a British judge ruled he should be extradited to Sweden to face sexual assault allegations.
A tweet from WikiLeaks on Thursday night read: “A high level source within the Ecuadorian state has told @WikiLeaks that Julian Assange will be expelled within “hours to days” using the #INAPapers offshore scandal as a pretext–and that it already has an agreement with the UK for his arrest.”
Its comes after Ecuador’s President Lenin Moreno said Assange has “repeatedly violated” the terms of his asylum in the London embassy, where he has lived for nearly seven years.
Interviewed by the Ecuadorean Radio Broadcasters’ Association, he said Assange does not have the right to “hack private accounts or phones” and cannot intervene in the politics of other countries, especially those that have friendly relations with Ecuador.
“Assange has violated the agreement we reached with him and his legal counsel too many times,” Moreno said in the interview in the city of Guayaquil.
“It is not that he cannot speak and express himself freely, but he cannot lie, nor much less hack private accounts or phones.”
Moreno did not at the time say whether or not the government would take steps to remove Assange from the embassy.
Assange took refuge in Ecuador’s London embassy to avoid being extradited to Sweden, where authorities wanted to question him as part of a sexual assault investigation.
That probe was later dropped, but Assange fears he could be extradited to face charges in the United States, where federal prosecutors are investigating WikiLeaks.
Ecuador last year established new rules for Assange’s behaviour while in the embassy, which required him to pay his medical bills and clean up after his pet cat.
He challenged the rules in local and international tribunals, arguing they violated his human rights. Both courts ruled against him.
Last month, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, which is linked to the Organization of American States, rejected Assange’s request that Ecuador ease the conditions it has imposed on his residence in the embassy.