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  1. #1
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    Wikileaks founder Julian Assange enters Ecuador's London embassy, asks for asylum

    Wikileaks founder Julian Assange enters Ecuadorian Embassy and seeks political asylum (Daily Mail)
    WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London seeking political asylum, according to sources.

    He walked into the embassy, in London's Knightsbridge district, and asked for asylum under the United Nations Human Rights Declaration.

    A statement issued on behalf of the embassy said: 'This afternoon Mr Julian Assange arrived at the Ecuadorian Embassy seeking political asylum from the Ecuadorian government.'
    ---
    The dramatic move followed a long-running legal bid by Mr Assange, 40 - who has been on bail and living with friends - to halt his extradition to Sweden, where he faces sex crime allegations.
    ---
    much more at link above

  2. #2
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    If they grant him asylum then what? Can the UK stop him from going?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thelma View Post
    If they grant him asylum then what? Can the UK stop him from going?
    Very good question. I haven't seen it answered yet. I did find this:
    ---
    Assange's presence will focus attention on the extent of diplomatic immunity for foreign embassies in the UK.
    ---
    The Ministry of Justice said that responsibility for handling his extradition rested with the Serious Organised crime Agency (SOCA) which deals with European Arrest Warrant requests. SOCA did not immediately reply to calls.
    ---
    Legal crisis over Julian Assange's asylum request (Guardian)

    Another interesting Guardian article about UK and Ecuadorian relations:

    Julian Assange's haven of choice

  4. #4
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    Looks like he breached his bail conditions.

    Link

    I wonder if they can just "consider" his request for a very long time.

  5. #5
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    Arrow Julian Assange: Ecuador grants Wikileaks founder asylum

    Ecuador has granted asylum to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange two months after he took refuge in its London embassy while fighting extradition from the UK.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-19281492

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  6. #6
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    Oh, what a kerfuffle in such a huge way.

    And in the details, seemingly lost, are two women who may have been raped. What happens to their rights? Where is *their* justice?

    It appears that it's lurking in the Ecuadoran embassy...and now, lots of political manouvering and posturing will have to happen before they can even begin to see justice...if ever.

    Sigh.

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    When you find yourself in the position to help somebody, do not feel burdened. Rather, feel happy and blessed because God is answering that person's prayer through you. In that moment, you are God's Angel - His door to reach through and bring light to someone who is struggling in the darkness.

    Be God's Light. Be God's love. Be an answered prayer. Be God's Door.

  7. #7
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    However, the UK has said they will not grant him safe passage which means he cannot leave the embassy, and they may invoke a law which means they can remove the diplomatic immunity of the embassy and walk in and remove him.

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  9. #9
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    Extradition expert Anand Doobay has just put paid to Tariq Ali's idea that Assange become a member of embassy staff in order to avoid arrest: to be a diplomat in the UK, you must be accredited by the government.

    Doobay said another suggestion that he be smuggled out in a "diplomatic bag" – usually used to carry post and papers – was far fetched. "Ecuador would have to breach the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations," he said.
    From the Guardian live link above

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Herding Cats View Post
    Oh, what a kerfuffle in such a huge way.

    And in the details, seemingly lost, are two women who may have been raped. What happens to their rights? Where is *their* justice?

    It appears that it's lurking in the Ecuadoran embassy...and now, lots of political manouvering and posturing will have to happen before they can even begin to see justice...if ever.

    Sigh.

    Best-
    Herding Cats
    Same goes for mr Assange who is now not able to prove his innocence.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010...assange-sweden


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by sherlockh View Post
    Same goes for mr Assange who is now not able to prove his innocence.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010...assange-sweden
    Agreed...

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    Herding Cats
    When you find yourself in the position to help somebody, do not feel burdened. Rather, feel happy and blessed because God is answering that person's prayer through you. In that moment, you are God's Angel - His door to reach through and bring light to someone who is struggling in the darkness.

    Be God's Light. Be God's love. Be an answered prayer. Be God's Door.

  12. #12
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    Assange is held to be innocent until the court is proven guilty. But the reason he is not being able to prove this, as it were, is because he will not go. Ecuador did not kidnap him. he is accused of something that in England would be considered rape (people have claimed it is just about condom use, but this is not true) i.e he is accused of having sex with a non-consenting woman. And his own lawyer admitted, eventually, that Assange did leave Sweden when he was told the police would be bringing him in. His lawyer had denied that he had been made aware of this, but his mobile proved that the prosecutor had informed him. His lawyer actually got officially reprimanded by the Swedish bar for trying to mislead the court. he may be innocent, but he is wanted for prosecution and so should, like anyone else, have to face this prosecution. Now he will also face charges for breaking his bail conditions.

  13. #13
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    Don't know about the Swedish charges but, were it not that, it would be something else: those who speak truth to power are frequently if not always persecuted.

  14. #14
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    The swedish allegations are for rape (and before the myth that in sweden rape is consensual sex without a condom, he is accused of having sex with a person who did not consent and was unable to consent). Why should he be granted immunity which is what his supporters want as they are saying that he should never have to face allegations? Should transparency not apply to everyone, or are those who demand transparency to be made exempt? As far as I am aware he has not told the truth, but provided a platform where others can in much the same way they could upload it to youtube, facebook, myspace, openleaks etc.
    I do not think Assange did himself any good by telling fibs about the help offered by australia (he claimed they had abandoned him, but an FOI request has shown in actual fact he refused their help several times), or was helped by his lawyers telling fibs about the case (trying to claim he did not flee when he was told he was going to be charged, and misleading the public as to the charges), or being fine in sweden until he was about to be charged and then suddenly annoucing if he was in sweden he could be sent to the us, or saying it was wrong to leak the charges about the case and an invasion of his privacy (seriously how could he keep a straight face) nor has it helped him that ecuador has announced they gave him asylum because the crimes he is accused of [non-consensual sex) are not a crime in latin america.

    Obviously he is innocent until proven guilty in a swedish court, but if we are to have a society where those with a bit of power are not allowed to committ rape or other crimes without facing the consequences we must first have a society where those accused of crimes must face these accusations.

  15. #15
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    This has me pulled in completely opposite directions.

    I am a big supporter and follower of Assange and Wikileaks. I truly believe in their mission and purpose.

    At the same time, as a feminist, and as someone who believes that we live in a world culture that trivializes rape and sexual assault, I think the allegations are extremely troublesome, to say the least.

    And then on the other hand, Assange, because of his work, is a lightning rod for false charges of any kind. I try to avoid buying into conspiracy theories, but there are niggling doubts about the accusations, and how the case has been handled.

    On the other hand, we are talking about Sweden here, not exactly a stereotypical hotbed of government persecution and corruption, and not likely to be a place where a political activist would disappear into a gulag or whatnot.

    I do think that somehow the charges need to be faced, by Assange. Otherwise what message do we send to other victims of sexual assault? But there should also be perhaps some sort of outside watchdog to be sure things are conducted fairly.

    The good news is that should Assange ever be legitimately sentenced for the alleged crimes,or even disappeared in a more sinister way, Wikileaks will still exist,and supporters and collaborators will be sure that it's work will continue.
    “Peace is not the product of terror or fear. Peace is not the silence of cemeteries. Peace is not the silent result of violent repression. Peace is the generous, tranquil contribution of all to the good of all." -Abp Oscar Romero

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