Thursday, August 16, 2012
News reports this morning state that Ecuador has announced that it will grant political asylum today to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Assange has been taking refuge in Ecuador's embassy in London since June 19. He is hoping to avoid extradition to Sweden where he is wanted for questioning in connection with alleged sex crimes. Assange also potentially faces extradition to the United States, where Ecuadorian Foreign Miniser Patino believes Assange will not receive a fair trial in connection with his release of thousands of secret documents and diplomatic cables relating to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as to U.S. foreign relations. It is unclear whether Britian will allow Assange to leave the United Kingdom for Ecuador. Thus far, the British government has taken the position that it has a legal obligation to extradite Assange to Sweden.