Swedish authorities have confirmed that a legal agreement reached last week with Ecuador would allow Swedish prosecutors to question WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the South American country’s embassy in London over alleged sexual offenses. The agreement could be adopted as early as this week. Assange has been subject to extradition to Sweden since 2010, where he is wanted for questioning concerning an allegation of rape. Assange denies the allegation and has expressed concern that he will be extradited from Sweden to the United States because of his perceived role in publishing classified US documents on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
The Ecuadorean Foreign Ministry confirmed the agreement would clear the way for “the interrogation of Assange in the Embassy of Ecuador in London”, the Wall Street Journal reports. “The agreement guarantees, among other things, the application and respect of the national legislation and principles of international rights, particularly those related to human rights, and the full exercise of national sovereignty, in any case of legal assistance between Ecuador and Sweden”, he said.
Assange is alleged to have committed crimes against two different women during a visit to Sweden in 2010. He has been wanted for questioning in Sweden over two counts of sexual molestation. Sweden made a formal request to interview Assange in Ecuador’s London Embassy, four years after the initial offer from Ecuadorian authorities. Mr Assange has been living in the embassy for more than four years after being granted asylum.
Featured image: Ecuadoran Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño met with Julian Assange in London 2013
Credit: Xavier Granja