President Lenin Moreno claims that Julian Assange was operating an “international espionage and computer terrorism center” in Ecuador’s British embassy. In a Wednesday interview with the BBC, Moreno also insists that former president Rafael Correa had full knowledge of Assange’s covert activities and allowed them to continue.
“During most of the previous administration, Julian Assange was able to conduct the work of WikiLeaks from the embassy with no interference and with full knowledge of officials,” Moreno said. “This was in clear violation of his agreement to observe behavior compatible with the will of the Ecuadorian government.”
In another interview Wednesday, Moreno claimed that the press was emphasizing Assange’s disruptive behavior and poor hygiene as the reason for his expulsion from the embassy last week. “We made clear that this was only one of the reasons for our decision to end his asylm,” Moreno said. “The more important reasons were his interference in the affairs of other countries. From the beginning, he was warned against this and he ignored the warnings.”
According to Moreno, Correa personally advised Assange to end his “illegal” work. “This happened in the case of his [Assange’s] support of the Catalonian rebellion as well as with interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.”
Moreno disputed WikiLeaks’ claim that Assange was not in control of the group’s activity during his asylum. “This is not true and we have clear evidence that he continued to operate the organization and the previous government was complicit in allowing this to happen.”
The president added that Ecuadorian government agencies have suffered 50 to 60 million internet hacking attempts since Assange left the embassy. “Obviously, WikiLeaks and its criminal supporters are hard at work to punish Ecuador for its decision. Fortunately, most of their attempts have not been successful.