Ecuador stops Assange communications outside its London embassy


The Ecuadorian Embassy in London has made a decision to shut off Internet access to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, saying his use of social media is harming the South American country's worldwide relations.

Assange has been living inside the embassy since June 2012, when he entered the building to avoid extradition to Sweden to face questioning about allegations of sex crimes, which he has always denied.

Mr Assange had also questioned accusations Moscow was responsible for the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia with a nerve agent on British soil.

Relations between Mr Assange and his host nation have often grown prickly.

"His behaviour, with his messages on social networks, puts at risk our good relations" with Britain and the European Union, the Ecuadoran government text said.

Ecuador said it suspended "systems that allow Julian Assange to communicate with the outside" due to his failure to honor a 2017 written agreement not to send messages involving "interference in relation to other states".

It's been a weird five years for Julian Assange.

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Assange had close ties to former Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa, but has seen the relationship cool under his successor, Lenín Moreno, who came to power past year.

Now, for at least the second time, Assange's internet connection has been cut off.

Assange responded to Duncan's comment with a tweet.

In 2016, Ecuador briefly suspended his internet connection for posting documents online that were seen as having an impact on the U.S. presidential election from which Donald Trump emerged the victor.

Assange couldn't refrain from commenting and answered Duncan through a tweet: "As a political prisoner detained without charge for 8 years, in violation of 2 United Nations rulings, I suppose I must be "miserable"; yet nothing wrong with being a "little" person although I'm rather tall; and better a "worm", a healthy creature that invigorates the soil, than a snake".

Assange argued that Sweden would eventually extradite him to the United States to face prosecution over WikiLeaks' publication of leaked classified military and diplomatic documents. Meanwhile, there's still an arrest warrant for him in Britain for jumping bail.