Ecuador resents British terrorizing her on behalf of the U.S.: Assange given asylum
When the Government of Britain threatened the South American nation Ecuador that it will forcibly storm its embassy in London to get the WikiLeaks whistleblower Julian Assange which was obvious to the entire political world that it was clearly in the interest of the United States, the representative democratic government of Ecuador told Britain that it is not a 'British colony' and the Western power to back off without terrorizing their nation.
With that, Ecuador confirmed that it is giving political asylum to Mr. Assange a pledge it made in late December 2010.
Sweden wants UK to extradite Mr. Assange to face 'sex charges'. The United States expected Sweden to handover Julian Assange to face trial for releasing classified/secret diplomatic communications of the State Department which has embarrassed the U.S. and led to relations problems with some countries.
Julian Assange has been granted asylum in Ecuador, where he would avoid extradition to Sweden to face rape charges. The Wikileaks founder has been holing up in the Ecuadorean embassy in London for two months, but early Thursday, 16 August Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino announced Assange could take refuge in the country.
Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino says Ecuador found that Assange faces a real threat of political persecution including the threat of extradition to the United States, where Patino said the Australian would not get a fair trial and could face the death penalty.
Agency reports said that the concerted and orchestrated campaign to capture Wikileaks founder Julian Assange and ultimately to hand him over to the tender mercies of a kangaroo court in the US, where he would likely be tried for spying and other possibly capital offenses, continues as Britain threatens the Ecuadoran Embassy with a police assault.
Reports also said what this astonishing incendiary reaction by the British Foreign Office to Assange’s grant of asylum by Ecuador makes abundantly clear is that Assange and his Wikileaks organization are truly feared by Britain and the US. His organization’s ability to expose the war crimes, the war criminals, and the international treachery of these two countries and their allies around the world is one of the biggest threats they face, and they are proving it by their desperate efforts to neutralize or eliminate him.
On August 16 asylum was granted short of freedom to leave Britain unarrested. Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino said "Ecuador decided to grant political asylum to Julian Assange following the request sent to the President."
Shortly before Patino's announcement, President Raphael Correa twittered "No one is going to terrorize us." He signaled his likely decision.
Earlier, Foreign Minister Patino released details of a letter from Britain's Quito embassy, saying:
"You need to be aware that there is a legal base in the UK, the Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act 1987, that would allow us to take actions in order to arrest Mr Assange in the current premises of the embassy."
"We need to reiterate that we consider the continued use of the diplomatic premises in this way incompatible with the Vienna convention and unsustainable and we have made clear the serious implications that this has for our diplomatic relations."
In response, Patino expressed shock and outrage, saying:
"Ecuador, as a state that respects rights and justice and is a democratic and peaceful nation state, rejects in the strongest possible terms the explicit threat of the British official communication."
"This is unbecoming of a democratic, civilised and law-abiding state. If this conduct persists, Ecuador will take appropriate responses in accordance with international law."
"If the measures announced in the British official communication materialize they will be interpreted by Ecuador as a hostile and intolerable act and also as an attack on our sovereignty, which would require us to respond with greater diplomatic force."
"Such actions would be a blatant disregard of the Vienna convention on diplomatic relations and of the rules of international law of the past four centuries."
"It would be a dangerous precedent because it would open the door to the violation of embassies as a declared sovereign space."
Soon after the strongly-worded letter UK officials softened their position. They said they're "committed to reaching a mutually acceptable decision."
Under Article 22(1) of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations:
"The premises of the mission shall be inviolable. The agents of the receiving State may not enter them, except with the consent of the head of the mission."
Article 22(3) states:
"The premises of the mission, their furnishings and other property thereon and the means of transport of the mission shall be immune from search, requisition, attachment or execution."
The text of the threatening UK letter, released by the Ecuadoran government, reads:
“You need to be aware that there is a legal base in the UK, the Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act 1987, that would allow us to take actions in order to arrest Mr Assange in the current premises of the Embassy.
“We sincerely hope that we do not reach that point, but if you are not capable of resolving this matter of Mr Assange’s presence in your premises, this is an open option for us...
“...We need to reiterate that we consider the continued use of the diplomatic premises in this way incompatible with the Vienna Convention and unsustainable and we have made clear the serious implications that this has for our diplomatic relations.”
A letter sent to the government of Ecuador by the British Embassy in Quito was even more explicit, saying:
“We must arrest Mr. Assange and extradite him to Sweden. Should you grant him asylum, and then request safe passage for him, we will refuse it. We consider Assange’s use of diplomatic premises to be incompatible with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, and not sustainable. Under the Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act of 1987, we have a legal basis to arrest Mr. Assange inside your embassy. If you cannot resolve the issue of Mr. Assange’s presence on your premises, then this route is open to us.”