Ecuador ‘Optimistic’ About Deal to Keep WikiLeaks Founder Out of US

Wants Britain to Get Swedish Promise Not to Trade Assange

The Ecuadorean government says that it is “optimistic” about negotiations related to Julian Assange’s asylum and that they believe it is possible to reach a “compromise” deal with the British government.

Britain is seeking to extradite Assange to Sweden, where he is sought for questioning related to sex allegations, but where no charges have been filed against him. Assange had sought asylum out of fear Sweden would immediately “trade” him to the US, where he might face torture or execution.

The compromise would involve a written guarantee from Sweden to Britain not to ship Assange to any third country after his extradition there. Britain would almost certainly not send Assange to the US given the grim prospects of a fair trial there, but Sweden has in the past refused to promise it wouldn’t guarantee anything of the sort. That may have to change for this deal to move forward.

According to President Rafael Correa, Assange has promised to “decline” his asylum if Sweden would promise not to send him to the United States, and would willingly go there for questioning. The US denies that it has attempted to acquire Assange yet, but officials have termed him a “terrorist” and members of Congress have called for his immediate execution.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.