By Aaron Kesel
Lawyers for Julian Assange are suing Ecuador, accusing the government of violating Assange’s “fundamental rights and freedoms.”
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 19, 2018
This comes after Ecuador cut off communications with the WikiLeaks founder for months. Assange has been barred up inside Ecuador’s London embassy for more than six years.
Last week the country promised to restore his connection while issuing Assange a set of Orwellian guidelines to abide by.
Baltasar Garzón, a lawyer for WikiLeaks, has launched a case, which is expected to be heard next week in a domestic court, Sky News reported.
WikiLeaks claims Assange’s access to the outside world has been “summarily cut off” and stated Ecuador has threatened to remove all protection given to his person that he has been granted when he was accepted into political asylum.
Lawyers for Assange have said they will also challenge the legality of the Ecuador government’s “special protocols,” which make his political asylum contingent upon “censoring” his own freedom of opinion, speech, and association, as well as violate Assange’s property and his visitors without any just warrant.
Another obligation for Assange to keep asylum requires journalists, lawyers and other visitors meeting with Assange to disclose details, including social media usernames, serial numbers of phones, tablets and other electronics. All of which can then be logged and then shared “with other agencies.”
This suggests that there is intense surveillance taking place of Assange’s IoT (Internet of Things) devices and potentially the use of exploits like those security vulnerabilities revealed in Vault 7.
In the statement, Assange’s legal team further claimed the Ecuador embassy can seize Assange’s property or anyone of visitors’ electronics, without a warrant, and hand it over to UK authorities at any time.
Perhaps more notably, once Assange’s Internet is restored he will be liable for any costs accumulated using WiFi and medical expenses.
The document also states that Assange can only use his own devices that are registered with Ecuador’s embassy except in extraordinary cases and only with written permission from Ecuador.
Ecuador has failed to keep to its promises thus far and even prevented a legal advisor from entering the building, according to an update on WikiLeaks’ Twitter.
Although Ecuador has stated that Mr. Assange’s isolation will be partly lifted today (after UN Special Rapportuers for Freedom of Expression & Refugees visited the country on Friday) it has yet to do so. A 2pm appointment today, with a legal advisor, was not let into the embassy.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 15, 2018
The WikiLeaks founder has been arbitrarily detained, according to the UN, for more than 6 years in the Ecuadorian embassy.
In March, Ecuador and its leader Lenín Moreno pulled the plug on Julian Assange’s Internet connection. Then, Ecuador further demanded Assange remove a specific tweet referencing a foreign political prisoner Carles Puigdemont. The irony here is that Ecuador accused Assange of “interfering in a state” for mentioning another political prisoner and Assange himself had more of his own rights taken away.
“In 1940 the elected president of Catalonia, Lluís Companys, was captured by the Gestapo, at the request of Spain, delivered to them and executed. Today, German police have arrested the elected president of Catalonia, Carles Puigdemont, at the request of Spain, to be extradited,” Assange tweeted.
Ecuador clarified its position on Julian Assange’s asylum at the time by drafting new rules limiting his communications according to WikiLeaks.
The original cut-off of Assange’s Internet was due to an alleged breach of an agreement to refrain from interfering in other states’ affairs.
The action, according to Ecuador, was taken following Assange’s breach of a written agreement signed with the Ecuadorian government at the end of 2017, in which he vowed “not to send messages interfering in the affairs of other sovereign states,” the government said in a statement. “The Executive remains open to the possibility of further sanctions in cases of future breaches of the agreements by Assange.”
WikiLeaks has previously stated that Assange was never under a gag agreement, calling the allegations “entirely false.”
WikiLeaks believes that the fact their editor is being censored for what Ecuador is stating is “interfering in a state” is a huge step in the direction of “setting a precedent that would outlaw millions of Twitter users, all journalists and more human rights workers.”
Even if his rights are given back, Assange is not safe and is still facing a threat of extradition, which the war is on to stop as Activist Post previously reported.
WikiLeaks has recently faced increased pressure from authorities. Last year, the U.S. Senate considered a bill that would classify WikiLeaks as a “non-state hostile intelligence service” bundled as part of the 2018 Intelligence Authorization Act. Presumably, that classification would authorize the use of force against WikiLeaks and presumably its supporters.
Then in late December of last year the Head Legal Office in Madrid of former judge and WikiLeaks’ chief counsel, Baltasar Garzón was raided by masked men dressed in all black and the security cameras were taped. Despite the break-in, nothing was taken and the operation was referred to as being “professionally done” by police.
The WikiLeaks founder has been in refuge since 2012.
The U.S. has been on a relentless crusade against WikiLeaks since May 2010 and considers Julian Assange’s arrest a priority, while several politicians have threatened Assange’s life. It has been almost 8 years now since Assange was arrested and detained under one form or another, with 2 years of virtual house arrest, 6 years confined inside the Ecuadorian embassy and now he can add unjustified solitary confinement to the long laundry list.
Meanwhile, it’s previously been highlighted by Activist Post that the UK’s Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt dared Assange to walk out of the Ecuadorean embassy. He might have said a little too much about an active investigation when he said that Assange was facing “serious charges,” because the article is now absent from News.com.au’s website.
UK foreign minister taunts political refugee to give up asylum
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) July 20, 2018
Charges against Assange in Sweden have been dropped, and he is facing only a minor charge in the UK for failing to turn up to a court hearing.
So it is unknown what “serious charges” Hunt was referring to. And this may be why the article was taken down at the time without notice, displaying a 404 error. It’s worth noting this is exactly what happened when Tommy Robinson stories were demanded to be deleted.
WikiLeaks also said earlier this week that U.S. congressmen wrote an open letter to Ecuador President Lenín Moreno stating that in order to advance “crucial matters… from economic co-operation to counternarcotics assistance, to the possible return of a USAID mission to Ecuador, we must first resolve a significant challenge created by your predecessor, Rafael Correa – the status of Julian Assange.”
NEW: Ahead of midterms, ranking Democrat, but not Republican, of House Foreign Relations Committee pressures Ecuador’s president @Lenin to hand over @WikiLeaks‘ publisher @JulianAssange “A dangerous criminal and a threat to global security”
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 17, 2018
Now WikiLeaks believes that the U.S. is trying to accelerate stripping Assange of his Ecuadorian citizenship. WikiLeaks noted in a tweet, that Assange’s citizenship status is “a barrier to rendering him to another state as article 79 of Ecuador’s constitution forbids extradition of citizens.”
After US pressure, moves accelerate to strip WikiLeaks’ publisher @JulianAssange of Ecuadorian citizenship. His citizenship status is a barrier to rendering him to another state as article 79 of Ecuador’s constitution forbids extradition of citizens. https://t.co/mZxzLTtAuo
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 18, 2018
If the UK or Ecuador does decide to illegally hand over Julian Assange to the U.S. in violation of two UN rulings, then it’s inevitable that we see a rain of leaks that the world has never seen. That will undoubtedly rock society as WikiLeaks has consistently for 11 years.
Last year, Moreno vowed to stop Assange from revealing further corruption about the United States for the duration of his stay at the embassy, stating he would “gag Assange from revealing further corruption about the U.S.”
Although Moreno claims to support Assange’s asylum, he previously said that he would ask him to “be very delicate when he addresses international politics, especially regarding countries with which we have good relations,” reported Latin American news outlet teleSUR.
The press release by WikiLeaks noted that last week, Ecuador’s former President Rafael Correa, whose administration granted Assange political asylum, said that the current administration is “trying to break him psychologically” and that a deal had been struck during Pence’s visit to Ecuador earlier this year.
It’s important to note as all this unfolds that WikiLeaks recently announced that one of Assange’s longtime associates, Kristin Hrafnsson, took over for him as WikiLeaks editor in chief.
For up-to-date accurate information on Julian Assange’s plight, see @Wikileaks, @AssangeMrs, and @Unity4J Twitter accounts. The website Unity4J will be up to date with information, live streams, and places where protests will be held in support of Julian Assange.
WikiLeaks is facing a second blockade with its U.S. tax-deductible status being threatened after its Vault 7 and Vault 8 disclosures exposing the CIA’s spying and hacking techniques. Assange has recommended that WikiLeaks supporters use cryptocurrency to donate to the organization in order to circumvent the blockade.
Aaron Kesel writes for Activist Post. Support us at Patreon. Follow us on Minds, Steemit, SoMee, BitChute, Facebook and Twitter. Ready for solutions? Subscribe to our premium newsletter Counter Markets.