Ecuador gives Assange citizenship

January 12, 2018

Julian Assange's future in Ecuador's London embassy is uncertain, as the UK rejects a request.

Britain has refused a request by Ecuador for diplomatic status to be given to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, a spokesman for Britain's Foreign Office says.

Assange has been holed up for more than five years in the Ecuadorean embassy in London where he was granted asylum in 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden over since dropped rape allegations.

"The government of Ecuador recently requested diplomatic status for Mr Assange here in the UK," the spokesman said on Thursday. "The UK did not grant that request, nor are we in talks with Ecuador on this matter."

"Ecuador knows that the way to resolve this issue is for Julian Assange to leave the embassy to face justice," the spokesman said.

The 46-year-old Australian still fears being sent to the US to face charges over WikiLeaks' release of secret US government documents.

Earlier this week the Ecuador's foreign minister said the country may pursue mediation to resolve the stand-off between the South American nation and Britain over his fate.

The UK's rejection of a diplomatic pass comes after Assange tweeted a cryptic picture of him dressed in the colours of Ecuador.

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