LONDON, UK – Australian Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has today claimed that he will “soon” leave the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he has been holed up for the past two years as he tries to avoid arrest and extradition to Sweden over sexual assault allegations.
Mr. Assange was granted political asylum by Ecuador in 2012 during the controversy following his release of leaked confidential documents, which took a strange turn after Sweden announced it’s intention to extradite him over accusations of sexual assault.
During his two years in the small Knightsbridge embassy, Assange has not been able to step outside for fear of being arrested. If he were taken to Sweden under the auspices of the European Arrest Warrant and then extradited to the United States he could face the same fate as leaker Bradley Manning. Private Manning, 26, was jailed for 35 years in 2013 for leaking files to Assange’s Wikileaks site.
Breitbart London was at the scene outside the Ecuadorian Embassy today where the world’s press gathered to watch and wait as Mr Assange continued his game of cat and mouse with the British authorities.
While throngs of media waited outside, with pro-Assange protesters dotted in amongst them, a police officer told Breitbart London that they did not expect Mr Assange to leave the embassy today.
Initially, the police were in constant contact with the embassy, but later in the day the police told us that Mr Assange and the embassy had “gone silent” and that they no longer expected him to leave today.
Assange has been unable to seek proper hospital treatment for his deteriorating health, which may have been aggravated by being unable to step outside. Metropolitan Police officers have been stationed outside the embassy permanently since 2012 with orders to pounce should he leave the diplomatic area.
Despite engaging in exercise indoors, a Wikileaks source has reported that Assange now has a heart condition, a chronic cough and high blood pressure. In a press conference this morning attended by Russian state broadcaster RT but closed to the BBC, Sky and others Mr. Assange complained that a lack of access to sunlight had contributed to his ill health.