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Britain denies Julian Assange’s request for diplomatic status

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"7/10 "Pride, Ball wrote, is “the..."


"Former British Ambassador to Uzbekis..."

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Britain’s Foreign Office has rejected a request (Guardian) from the Ecuadorian government to grant diplomatic status to Julian Assange, a possible attempt to break the stalemate over the WikiLeaks founder who has been living in the nation’s London embassy for more than five years. 

“Ecuador knows that the way to resolve this issue is for Julian Assange to leave the embassy to face justice,” the Foreign Office said on Wednesday.

Assange has remained within the embassy for fear that he will be extradited to the U.S. for prosecution over WikiLeaks if he leaves. Originally he sought refuge against extradition to Sweden, where he was wanted on sexual assault charges. But as Sweden has an extradition agreement with the U.S., he feared he would be sent there ultimately.


James Ball, a journalist who had worked at WikiLeaks in 2010 and 2011, wrote a critical op-ed in the Guardian  on why Assange has not yet left the embassy.

Pride, Ball wrote, is “the only barrier” to him leaving.

“The problem for both sides is that neither wants to lose face: Assange wants to be a symbol of resistance against an overreaching U.S. state, and does not want to admit his asylum was about his personal actions and not those of WikiLeaks. Ecuador does not want to suggest it made a mistake in granting Assange asylum,” Ball wrote.

WikiTribune is currently trying to arrange an interview with Assange. What do you think we should ask him? Please discuss in TALK or add information using EDIT. 

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Linh is a staff journalist at WikiTribune with a background in the humanities. She covers the Middle East, Asia, conflict and technology. Though based in London, she has freelanced across Asia, the UK and U.S.

History for stories "Britain denies Julian Assange’s request for diplomatic status"

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11 January 2018

12:51:49, 11 Jan 2018 . .‎ Angela Long (Updated → )
12:46:03, 11 Jan 2018 . .‎ Angela Long (Updated → important to explain Swedish angle)
12:44:49, 11 Jan 2018 . .‎ Angela Long (Updated → no Justice at Foreign Office)
12:21:20, 11 Jan 2018 . .‎ Ed Upright (Updated → editing)
11:22:09, 11 Jan 2018 . .‎ Linh Nguyen (Updated → update)

Talk for Story "Britain denies Julian Assange’s request for diplomatic status"

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  1. Flagged as bias


    “Pride, Ball wrote, is “the only barrier” to him leaving.”

    That seems dumb, since Assange in rightly so afraid of needing to serve a severe prison sentence for helping whistle-blowers expose their secrets if he gets extradited to the US.

    It seems “the Pride” argument is simply wrong using simple argumentation, which is something I think journalist that wrote this should explore, to show the other side of why Assange is staying in the embassy.

    If I’m thinking in the wrong way, please explain to me where I got this wrong, would like to know and improve. Thanks

  2. Rewrite

    Former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray has weighed in on Britain’s response to Ecuador’s bid to give Julian Assange diplomatic status.

    He refers to article 39 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations which both Britain and Ecuador are both parties of.

    1.Every person entitled to privileges and immunities shall enjoy them from the moment he enters the territory of the receiving State on proceeding to take up his post or, if already in its territory, from the moment when his appointment is notified to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs or such other ministry
    as may be agreed.


    The former Ambassador does have a personal bias in the matter as he claims to be the go between for Wikileaks and the person or people who “leaked” the information from the DNC emails:

    There has been little in the news outside of the former ambassador’s claims as to the actual law behind Ecuador’s decision to give Assange diplomatic status.

    It would seem that a further review of the actual laws regarding this decision would be warranted as well as getting a legal opinion from the UK, Ecuador, and those overseeing the Vienna Convention on diplomatic Relations.

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