Assange arrested from Ecuador embassy in UK

first_imgLondon: Wikileaks co-founder Julian Assange was on Thursday arrested after staying in Ecuador’s embassy in London for seven years as the South American country withdrew the asylum granted to him. Scotland Yard confirmed the arrest and said its officers had executed a warrant against Assange dating back to June 2012 for breach of bail conditions in the UK. The 47-year-old Australian-born has been holed up in a back room of the Ecuador embassy in central London for nearly seven years since his arrest on sexual assault charges in Sweden. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsHe claimed asylum on the grounds that he feared ultimate extradition to the US, where he faces a possible death sentence or torture for Wikileaks’ alleged leak of American secrets. “He (Assange) has been taken into custody at a central London police station where he will remain, before being presented before Westminster Magistrates’ Court as soon as is possible,” a Metropolitan Police statement said, adding that Assange had been arrested on a warrant issued by the same court on 29 June 2012, for “failing to surrender to the court”. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday”The MPS (Met Police Service) had a duty to execute the warrant, on behalf of Westminster Magistrates’ Court, and was invited into the embassy by the Ambassador, following the Ecuadorian government’s withdrawal of asylum,” the statement said. Assange sought refuge at the Ecuador Embassy in Knightsbridge in June 2012, having lost an appeal against extradition to Sweden for questioning on allegations of rape and sexual assault that went up to the UK Supreme Court. While the Swedish case has since been dropped, Assange was wanted by Scotland Yard for breach of bail and faced arrest the moment he stepped out of the diplomatically immune territory. But once that immunity was lifted, he was taken into custody. The UK government welcomed the arrest, which it said was the result of “extensive dialogue” between the UK and Ecuador.last_img

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