Thursday, August 16, 2012

Will The UK Police Move In And Arrest Wikileaks Founder Julian Assange At The London Ecuador Embassy - UPDATE Julian Assange granted political asylum by Ecuador

By Kathleen

Last night scenes outside the Ecuador Embassy as police vans move in,

It has been confirmed that the UK police are threatening to move in and arrest Julian Assange who is believed to have sought refuge in the sovereign embassy of Ecuador in London. Assange who is thought to have been in the embassy for the past two months has sought asylum in Ecuador and a decision on his application is thought to be imminent. It is believed that the police will want to make their move before approval has been granted. 

At the moment the police have greatly extended their presence outside the Embassy -- there are at least five vans nearby and barricades are in place. Loading bays at Harrods have been blocked off and deliveries there have been turned away. This move has sparked condemnation from Ecuador's Foreign Minister who has stated that the UK has threatened "to assault our embassy" and that such an act  would be considered as "hostile and intolerable".

Yesterday the Wikileaks organisation leaked a copy of a letter that was received by Ecuador threatening that a law passed in 1987 would permit the UK government to authorize the removal of the sovereign rights of a building if the country occupying it is thought to be working against the interests of the United Kingdom. The removal of such rights would permit UK police forces to storm the Embassy and move in and arrest Assange.  The letter is written in Spanish and has been interpreted by a commenter at Wikileaks as follows:

 We are aware of and surprised by, the reports in the media of
last 24 hours, compared to that Ecuador would reach a decision and intends to grant asylum
Mr. Assange.
• The reports quoted official sources.
• We note that the President has not yet made a decision.
• We are concerned, should be true of. this undermines our efforts to agree a
joint text setting out the positions of both countries, allowing Mr. Assange leave
the Embassy.
• As we have stated previously, we meet our legal obligations under the
Framework Decision on the European Arrest Warrant and Extradition Act 2003
(Extradition Act 2003), to arrest and extradite Mr. Assange to Sweden. We remain committed
to work with you to resolve this matter amicably. But we must be absolutely
clear that this means that if you receive a request for safe passage for Mr.
Assange, after granting asylum, it will be denied, in line with our obligations
• From this perspective, and given the statements of the last 24 hours, we hope that you
are prepared to continue to carry out the current diplomatic discussions. We
believing that a solution is possible based on jointly agreed text, that would play with
to the departure of Mr. Assange of the Embassy, leading to his extradition.
• We have another meeting (video conference) scheduled for Thursday August 16. Given the
statements made yesterday in Quito, about an imminent decision, should we assume that this
meeting will be the last to agree a joint text?
• We reiterate that we consider the continued use of diplomatic facilities in this way
incompatible with the Vienna Convention and unsustainable, and that we have made clear the serious
implications for our diplomatic relations.
• They must be aware that there is a basis in the UK - Facilities Act
Diplomatic and Consular 1987 (Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act 1987) - we
would take action to arrest Mr. Assange in existing facilities of the Embassy.
• We sincerely hope not to have to get to this point, but if you can not resolve the
issue of the presence of Mr. Assange in its facilities, this route is open to us.
• You understand the importance of the issues raised by Mr. Assange, and
public pressure in Ecuador. But anyway we have to solve the situation in the
Instead, here in the UK, in line with our legal obligations. We have endeavored to
develop a joint text, to help satisfy their concerns and needs of
presentation to the public.
• We continue t
o believe that a joint text and a voluntary surrender by Mr. Assange is the
best solution.

 The Guardian states that tensions are high between Britain and Ecuador and that the Ecuadoran Foreign Minister has stated that "We want to make it absolutely clear that we are not a British colony, and the times of the colonies are over."

Assange who has not been charged is wanted for questioning by the Swedish authorities in relation to accusations that he had sex with two Swedish women without their permission. Assange has asserted that the claims made against him have been made in order for him to be extradited to Sweden which will then extradite him to the United States where he could face charges of treason. 

Is the British Government prepared to breach international law and spark off a huge diplomatic war  in order to arrest Assange? My hope is that Julian Assange is long gone and that the British Government will be left with a huge bill and egg on its face.

RT is live blogging the event:

And a live video can be found here:

As I write police are arresting streamers who do not have official press credentials. One of the streamers has just been arrested. It's getting quite ugly.

You find more excellent live blogging at the "Guardian!"


A recent article published at The Guardian asserts that the UK government could be flouting International Law if it permits a raid on the Ecuador embassy.

Hopefully this hostile move by the UK government is simply mere posturing because if such a raid does take place then it will set a precedent that could be used by unstable regimes across the world.

UPDATE 2: Assange granted political asylum
In a statement just released by the Ecuador Foreign Minister, Ricardo Patino,  he once again makes the claim that any move by the UK to storm the embassy would be regarded as a threat. After careful consideration Ecuador has decided to grant political asylum to Julian Assange in order to protect him from the possibility that he could be extradited to the US. Patino states that Australia has not adequately protected Assange who is struggling for freedom of speech around the world. Ecuador will not allow the discussion between the UK and Ecuador to be mired by intimidation. Government law should not be allowed to deny individuals the right to asylum. Political asylum should be a right for all.

Patino confirms that Ecuador will grant political asylum to Julian Assange.

This information came from reuters livestream and


UPDATE 3 (by Patrick):

This whole kerfuffle at the Ecuadoran embassy in London was not caused by the fact that an Australian citizen did not like to use condoms while having sex in Sweden or did not use them properly (read the details of the allegations against Julian Assange). This is utter nonsense. Julian Assange has not even been charged with any crimes, and one easy solution would be to grant him safe passage to Sweden in order to be questioned by the Swedish prosecutors without the fear of being extradited to the USA - which UK foreign secretary William Hague refused, as well as the Swedish prosecutors.

No, Britain is willing to cause a major diplomatic crisis because Julian Assange is the founder of Wikileaks - and never has an organization upset governments all over the world like Wikileaks did during the recent years. Yes, Wikileaks is a threat - but not for freedom or democracy, but for governments who do not want their dirty wars, their corruption and their shady dealings and secrets exposed - and it is a threat for corporation who indulge in shady dealings as well.

Therefore it was just consequential that Wikileaks also exposed what would probably the biggest US secret concerning Julian Assange at this moment: That there is a sealed indictment in the USA against Julian Assange.

This revelation was made possible at the beginning of this year through the "Stratfor-emails" which Anonymous gave to Wikileaks. See for example this report by Rolling Stone from February 28, 2012 - and who blurted the big secret out? Well, you are allowed to take just one guess! ;-)

Of course was our new "friend" Fred Burton, Stratfor's Vice-President, who indeed is extremely well connected, as many emails prove which I have read - and who again could not keep his mouth shut. Just in case you had not seen our previous reports: We were given exclusive access to the whole pile of the Stratfor-emails and reported about it here, here and here.

Here is Fred Burton's email message which revealed the big secret:

"Not for Pub --

We have a sealed indictment on Assange.

Pls protect"

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

A short while before he wrote this email, Fred Burton had more thoughts about Julian Assange in jail - or how to get him indicted:

"Will take weeks for extradition, unless he waves the process. DOJ (Holder) won't seek prosecution on their own, but look for the GOP (Congress) to press for criminal prosecution. Be easy to indict. I would pursue Conspiracy and Political Terrorism charges and declassify the death of a source someone which I could link to Wiki."
"One other point is this. Ferreting out his confederates is also key. Find out what other disgruntled rogues inside the tent or outside. Pile on. Move him from country to country to face various charges for the next 25 years. But, seize everything he and his family own, to include every person linked to Wiki."

Wikileaks is a controversial organization, but also a very important one. It is the messenger, and the more inconvenient the messages, the greater the hatred. In this world, there are many ugly secrets which are just waiting to be exposed. Wikileaks is an invaluable tool. Please take the time to watch this excellent documentary:

Please visit our friend Phil Munger at "Progressive Alaska" for the Australian documentary about Julian Assange: "Sex, Lies and Julian Assange" - another excellent, must-see documentary.

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