WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said Saturday that he will publish evidence of government corruption in Ecuador if it finds it. He was responding to President Lenin Moreno’s request that he refrain from meddling in Ecuador’s internal affairs.
Assange has been holed-up in Ecuador’s London embassy since 2012, when he was granted political asylum.
Ecuador is negotiating with Great Britain for Assange’s safe passage to Ecuador following the decision last week by Sweden to drop sexual assault charges against him. Britain has yet to drop evasion of justice charges connected with the Swedish charges.
Assange says he will reveal corruption wherever he finds it, including in Ecuador, and that he is protected by the Ecuadorian constitution if he does. “There is no gag rule under Ecuadorian law and will exercise my rights if necessary,” he said.
Citing the Ecuadorian constitution, he wrote on his Twitter account that “persons who are in asylum or refugee status shall enjoy special protection to ensure the full exercise of their rights.”
He also referred to the United Nations Convention on the Status of Refugees under which Ecuador granted him asylum as providing him protection.
Following Assange’s Tweet, a member of Moreno’s staff, who asked not to be identified, commented on a Quito newspaper blog, “Maybe it’s time we introduce Mr. Assange to the front door of the embassy.”