Although the authorities do not officially call this the reason for the changes.Julian Assange on the balcony of the Embassy in London. EPA photo
From the Embassy of Ecuador in the UK, where the founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange, “immediately” withdrew additional protection. As reported by theMinistry of Communications of the South American country, such a decision was taken by President Lenin Moreno.
From now on, the diplomatic mission should have the usual number of employees for embassies, the statement says. The authorities of Ecuador did not explain the reason for their decision.
Moreno cut off Assange’s guard a day after the publication of the Guardian investigation , according to which at least $ 5 million was spent on guarding the founder of Wikileaks. Among other things, the authorities paid for the work of secret agents to monitor the police, as well as the maintenance of video surveillance systems. Also, the security firm advised Assange on every visitor, having previously collected data on him. The budget was approved by the previous president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, and the government spent up to 66 thousand dollars a month. As stated, the authorities were worried about the image of the country against the backdrop of the case of the head of Wikileaks.
In March, the government of Ecuador deprived Assange of the Internet due to violation of the obligation to “non-interference in international relations.” As the media found out, the reason was his tweets about the poisoning of former Colonel GRU Sergey Skripal and his daughter.
Assange is in the embassy of Ecuador in London since 2012. He is afraid of extradition to the United States in the case of disclosure of classified data. If the founder of WikiLeaks leaves the territory of the diplomatic mission, the British police will be able to detain him under the current warrant.