Assange’s belongings ‘to be handed to US’ – WikiLeaks

Julian Assange’s belongings from his time living in the Ecuadorian embassy in London will be handed over to US prosecutors, WikiLeaks has claimed.

Ecuadorian officials are said to be travelling to London to allow US prosecutors to “help themselves” to the items, which include legal papers, medical records and electronic equipment.

WikiLeaks said officials from the UN and Assange’s lawyers are not allowed to be present and called it a “puppet show”.

Lawyers said it was an illegal seizure of property and had been requested by US authorities.

Julian Assange arrives at court
Image: Julian Assange could be extradited to the US or Sweden

Two of Assange’s manuscripts are said to be among the items.

Kristinn Hrafnsson, editor in chief of WikiLeaks, said: “On Monday Ecuador will perform a puppet show at the embassy of Ecuador in London for their masters in Washington, just in time to expand their extradition case before the UK deadline on 14 June.

“The Trump administration is inducing its allies to behave like it’s the Wild West.”

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Baltasar Garzon, international legal co-ordinator for the defence of Assange and WikiLeaks, said: “It is extremely worrying that Ecuador has proceeded with the search and seizure of property, documents, information and other material belonging to the defence of Julian Assange, which Ecuador arbitrarily confiscated, so that these can be handed over to the the agent of political persecution against him, the United States.

“It is an unprecedented attack on the rights of the defence, freedom of expression and access to information exposing massive human rights abuses and corruption. We call on international protection institutions to intervene to put a stop to this persecution.”

Earlier this week, Ecuador said it was waiting for the results of an investigation into his belongings, and claimed he repeatedly violated his asylum conditions by attempting to use the embassy for spying.

Ecuador’s foreign minister Jose Valencia said: “For us it is clear that there’s no basis to the accusations that the Ecuadorean embassy in London spied on Assange. It’s ridiculous.

“There is a documentary that I want everyone to see by Laura Poitras, a Guardian journalist and a friend of Assange. The documentary is called ‘Risk’ and it’s on Netflix.

“In the 58th minute you see Assange in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London and his laptop is connected to the internet via cable in our embassy. You see clearly that he is seated there and you can see the screen.

“What’s on the screen? The security cameras of the embassy, the very cameras he says were spying on him. He appears to have been manipulating them from his laptop.”

Assange is in prison serving a 50-week sentence for bail violation. He was dragged out of the Ecuadorian embassy after the nation decided to stop giving him asylum in London after seven years.

He faces extradition requests from the US already and Sweden is likely to make one after its prosecutor decided to reopen an investigation into sexual assault allegations made against him.

Source: SKY NEWS

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