Ecuador will cooperate with Sweden on Assange

2016-01-14 11:22
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange speaking to the media inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. (Anthony Devlin, AFP)

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange speaking to the media inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. (Anthony Devlin, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Quito - Ecuador said on Wednesday it will cooperate with Swedish prosecutors after they formally requested permission to interrogate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at his hideout in the Ecuadoran embassy in London.

"We will cooperate with the Swedish authorities so they can take some statements. We have said that from the beginning," said Ecuadoran Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino in an interview with news site Ecuadorinmediato.

He said the interrogation would take place under Ecuadoran law because the 44-year-old Australian, who faces a rape allegation, "is under our country's jurisdiction."

He said he did not know "exactly what the procedure is," but that Ecuadoran prosecutors would carry out the questioning - though Swedish prosecutors could also be present, he added.

Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadoran embassy since 2012.

He has repeatedly refused to travel to Sweden to answer to the rape allegation, saying he fears he would then face extradition to the United States and trial over the leaking of hundreds of thousands of classified US military and diplomatic documents in 2010.

Patino questioned why it had taken Swedish authorities "so long" to agree to question Assange under Ecuadoran law, and said it fueled "suspicions."

"We believe there really is a process of persecution" against Assange, he said.

Last March, Swedish prosecutors offered to question Assange in London, dropping their demand that he come to Sweden.

But Quito refused to allow an interrogation until the two countries signed an agreement on general legal cooperation -- which they finally did in December.

Swedish prosecutors dropped a sexual assault probe against Assange in mid-August after the five-year statute of limitations expired.

But they still want to question him about a 2010 rape allegation, which carries a 10-year statute of limitations.

Assange has denied all the allegations and insisted the sexual encounters were consensual.

Read more on:    julian assange  |  ecuador  |  sweden  |  wikileaks  |  security

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.