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posted by martyb on Thursday March 29 2018, @07:26AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the who-ya-gonna-call? dept.

Ecuador cuts off Julian Assange's internet access at London embassy

The government of Ecuador has confirmed that it has cut off internet access in its embassy in London to Julian Assange, the founder of the whistleblowing site WikiLeaks, saying that he was putting the country's international relations at risk.

In a statement released on Wednesday, Ecuador said that the step had been taken because Assange had failed to abide by an agreement not to interfere in the South American country's relations with other states.

"The government of Ecuador warns that Assange's behaviour, through his messages on social networks, put at risk the country's good relations with the United Kingdom, the other states of the European Union, and other nations," the statement said.

[...] Ecuador temporarily cut Assange's internet connection in 2016, over fears that he was using it to interfere in the US presidential election, but it was later restored.

Also at the Miami Herald and teleSUR.


Original Submission

Related Stories

Prominent Whistleblowers and Journalists Defend Julian Assange at Online Vigil 37 comments

Prominent whistleblowers and journalists defend Julian Assange at online vigil

Over the weekend, dozens of public figures, including prominent whistleblowers and journalists, took part in a 36-hour international online vigil in defence of WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange. The event was the third "Unity4J" vigil organised by independent journalist and New Zealand Internet Party leader, Suzie Dawson, since Assange's communications were cut-off by Ecuadorian authorities at their London embassy last March.

[...] Daniel Ellsberg, whose release of the Pentagon Papers in 1971 exposed the extent of US criminality in Vietnam, drew a parallel between his own activities and those of WikiLeaks. Referring to WikiLeaks' 2010 publication of US war logs in Iraq and Afghanistan, he stated: "I really waited almost 40 years, after the Pentagon Papers had come out, for someone to do what I had done."

Ellsberg pointed to similarities between the attacks that had been levelled against him, and the persecution of Assange. "I was charged with 12 felony counts, a possible 150 years in prison. Nixon had in mind for me what Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have had in mind for Julian Assange," he said.

takyon: #Unity4J. See also: Why I Stand With Julian Assange at The American Conservative.

Related: FBI Whistleblower on Pierre Omidyar and His Campaign to Neuter Wikileaks
Julian Assange has His Internet Access Cut Off by Ecuador
Ecuador Spent $5 Million Protecting and Spying on Julian Assange


Original Submission

Julian Assange Sues Ecuador for "Violating His Fundamental Rights" 34 comments

Julian Assange Says He's Suing Ecuador for 'Violating His Fundamental Rights'

Julian Assange announced on Friday that he was suing the Ecuadorean government for "violating his fundamental rights," claiming that his longtime hosts at the country's embassy in London are limiting his contact with the outside world and censoring his speech.

His legal team in the matter, led by the former Spanish judge Baltasar Garzón, revealed the suit at a news conference in Quito, where the lawsuit was filed. The action aims to prevent strict new rules governing Mr. Assange's visitors and online activity from taking effect.

The policies were laid out in a nine-page memo that was published by a news site this month. (They include directives to clean his bathroom and look after his cat.)

Clean up your room and brush your teeth before you go to bed.

Also at Reuters, CNN, and USA Today.

Previously: Julian Assange has His Internet Access Cut Off by Ecuador
Ecuador Spent $5 Million Protecting and Spying on Julian Assange
Ecuador Reportedly Almost Ready to Hand Julian Assange Over to UK Authorities
Associated Press Publishes Supposedly Leaked WikiLeaks Documents
The Guardian: Russian Diplomats Planned to Sneak Julian Assange Out of the UK


Original Submission

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  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @08:42AM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @08:42AM (#659889)

    Maybe because he's dead already, dead people don't need internet access.

    an agreement not to interfere in the South American country's relations with other states.

    But of course.

    • (Score: 2) by takyon on Thursday March 29 2018, @10:30AM (1 child)

      by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Thursday March 29 2018, @10:30AM (#659911) Journal

      an agreement not to interfere in the South American country's relations with other states.

      Very broad. I think Ecuador's relations with the UK have taken a hit.

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      [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @03:38PM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @03:38PM (#660011)

      Mostly dead.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @04:39PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @04:39PM (#660035)

        I don't want to go in the cart!

        - Julian Assange

  • (Score: 2) by looorg on Thursday March 29 2018, @10:08AM

    by looorg (578) on Thursday March 29 2018, @10:08AM (#659903)

    Another sign that he has overstayed his welcome, still not at the level of getting a bag over his head and a push out the front door. That said I'm sure they'll turn it back on sooner of later, perhaps with some more blocking, filtering and monitoring installed.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Pav on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:29AM (10 children)

    by Pav (114) on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:29AM (#659918)

    Assange has been vocal regarding Catalan independance eg. :

    "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."

    Spain is rather... sensitive... about this issue. It would be no surprise if additional pressure by Spain gave Equador that extra push.

    Assange, Manning, Snowden... all three have been more or less successfully been labeled as sexually deviant, attention seeking and traitorous (although the old pole-dancing girlfriend trick didn't really work on Snowden I guess), and I believe attempts have been made to turn them on eachother also. Their crime? Sharing information of the powerful with the populous. Obama on the other hand was a hero and innovator when his creepy data mining on Facebook seemed to help during his election, though all of a sudden it's a crime against humanity when Trump and Cambridge Analytica did it - perhaps some good will come out of his presidency after all.

    • (Score: -1, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:33AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:33AM (#659919)

      Soon there will be nowhere to run and hide for the criminally corrupt who wrongfully oppress the weak and suppress the truth. Even the watchers are not immune from being watched.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by takyon on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:37AM

      by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:37AM (#659921) Journal

      Spain is rather... sensitive... about this issue. It would be no surprise if additional pressure by Spain gave Equador that extra push.

      Since I doubt anyone here knows much about the ties between Ecuador and Spain, here's a little bit:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecuador–Spain_relations [wikipedia.org]

      One part that stands out:

      In 2013, there were 456,000 Ecuadorian citizens living in Spain. Many of the Ecuadorians in Spain arrived in the 1990s during the Ecuador financial crisis which led to the country adopting the U.S. dollar. In 2013, 21,000 Spanish citizens resided in Ecuador. Between 2008 and 2015, 35,000 Spanish citizens arrived to Ecuador of which 36% were born in Spain and 62% were Spanish citizens of Ecuadorian origin.

      Ecuador has a population of about 16.5 million.

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      [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
    • (Score: 0, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @02:16PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @02:16PM (#659965)

      Really? Cause snowden was never called a perv.
      Manning is hated for being an attention seeker
      and Assange is an asshole and probably a perv.

    • (Score: 2) by LoRdTAW on Thursday March 29 2018, @03:15PM (2 children)

      by LoRdTAW (3755) on Thursday March 29 2018, @03:15PM (#659995) Journal

      Obama on the other hand was a hero and innovator when his creepy data mining on Facebook seemed to help during his election, though all of a sudden it's a crime against humanity when Trump and Cambridge Analytica did it - perhaps some good will come out of his presidency after all.

      (Dons tin foil hat) That was the trail run.

      • (Score: 1, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @04:55PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @04:55PM (#660050)

        If you're doing a trail run I recommend sunscreen instead of tinfoil.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 30 2018, @01:34AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 30 2018, @01:34AM (#660259)

          It might be a bit uncomfortable and you'd need more than just a hat, but tinfoil would make an excellent sunscreen.

    • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Thursday March 29 2018, @05:42PM (3 children)

      by Phoenix666 (552) on Thursday March 29 2018, @05:42PM (#660090) Journal

      This episode is another example of how this initial phase of the human struggle for democracy has failed. Snowden, Assange, and Manning are being persecuted for sharing proof of government crimes with citizens. These are not totalitarian states like the People's Republic of China or North Korea we're talking about, but supposed democracies with supposed sacrosanct protections for human rights.

      Criminals are our governments. Justice will never come from them, only from us.

      --
      Washington DC delenda est.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:49PM (2 children)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:49PM (#660130)

        Well when the elite decide that they need protections against the general public --> electoral college, then yeah the idea of democracy has failed right out the gate. The US system was designed with very little power given to the people. I don't really fault them for the choice, but in this new age of information connectivity we should work on a better system.

        Turns out we need a 3rd branch of government, THE PEOPLE! When you have to say pretty please represent our actual interests congress critter then the system has failed. It is a tough problem, but obviously we need to figure out something better before we implode.

        • (Score: 2) by bob_super on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:54PM (1 child)

          by bob_super (1357) on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:54PM (#660132)

          > Turns out we need a 3rd branch of government

          So many people have figured that out, it's been in the US constitution for over 200 years, and in those of most developed countries, too.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @09:43PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @09:43PM (#660216)

            DAMN! 4th! 4th branch!!

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by takyon on Thursday March 29 2018, @12:58PM (13 children)

    by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Thursday March 29 2018, @12:58PM (#659938) Journal

    UK minister: 'miserable little worm' Assange should turn himself in [reuters.com]

    “It’s of great regret that Julian Assange remains in the Ecuador embassy,” junior minister Alan Duncan said during a question-and-answer session on foreign affairs in parliament’s House of Commons, in response to a question about Assange.

    “It’s about time that this miserable little worm walked out of the embassy and gave himself up to British justice.”

    Assange responded to Duncan’s comment with a tweet.

    “As a political prisoner detained without charge for 8 years, in violation of 2 UN rulings, I suppose I must be ‘miserable’; yet nothing wrong with being a ‘little’ person although I’m rather tall; and better a ‘worm’, a healthy creature that invigorates the soil, than a snake,” he said.

    --
    [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
    • (Score: 2) by zocalo on Thursday March 29 2018, @01:36PM (8 children)

      by zocalo (302) on Thursday March 29 2018, @01:36PM (#659946)
      I'm guessing statements like that might explain why Alan Duncan is only a junior minister but, to be fair, Assange's statement is rather liberal with the truth - he's only a prisoner detained for eight years because he *chose* to flee to the Ecuadorian Embassy and inflict that on himself, and he's also equally free to pack his bags and walk out the front door. Sure, that might result in having to face up to the consequences of the fact he breached the conditions of his bail, but IIRC that's currently the only thing that the UK justice system has on him?

      Here's the thing though; the question of what the absolute worst penalty the UK is legally able to impose for his breach of bail for something that no longer applies - how much prison time, and how much of a fine - which I'm sure Assange would have been told by his legal team. According to this page [sentencingcouncil.org.uk] it's not really all that much - a level 5 fine (£5000) and/or up to 3 months (12 months if indicted), but IANAL and Assange's case may have other considerations. From the moment the Swedes officially dropped their case in May 2017, Assange has been choosing his self-imposed house arrest over that worst case scenario, and there has to be some point at which it would have definitely been easier to just do the time, especially given his claims of health issues arising from his confinement. Given we seem to be pretty close to that point, and paranoia about some form of rendition to the US aside, at this point I think both sides are probably seeing the current situation as "win". Assange because he gets to play the self-imposed martyr for his fans, and western governments because even with Internet access he's still bottled up and less able to stir the pot - and as a bonus someone else footing the bill; keeping someone in jail/prison/Guantanamo Bay isn't going to be cheap.
      --
      UNIX? They're not even circumcised! Savages!
      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us on Thursday March 29 2018, @03:14PM (6 children)

        by All Your Lawn Are Belong To Us (6553) on Thursday March 29 2018, @03:14PM (#659994) Journal

        a level 5 fine (£5000) and/or up to 3 months (12 months if indicted), but IANAL and Assange's case may have other considerations. From the moment the Swedes officially dropped their case in May 2017, Assange has been choosing his self-imposed house arrest over that worst case scenario, and there has to be some point at which it would have definitely been easier to just do the time,

        But that's not the worst case scenario by a long shot. This is [nytimes.com]. And check dates - this was long before extraordinary rendition was considered a tool to be used. No rational actor would choose Assange's path under the circumstances you describe. The reality is that if Assange leaves he is invited to leave the country. My guess is that the U.S. has already arranged that there will be no way he'll be allowed to use the Chunnel / France nor Ireland will be allowed to accept him. That means international travel and that means he's fair game as was established by force majeure back in 85.

        --
        Keep everyone ignorant of the magical world! KEEP AMERICA OBLIVIATE!
        • (Score: 2) by zocalo on Thursday March 29 2018, @05:17PM (4 children)

          by zocalo (302) on Thursday March 29 2018, @05:17PM (#660064)
          Sure, that's an option, but I did say legal options, and in any event the UK government isn't exactly in a strong position at present and probably wouldn't want to roll the dice by being party to a rendition after the public outcry last time they were found to be party to it, and Assange has a much higher profile than most of those that were renditioned. Rendition is also going to incur an awful lot of cost, effort, and potential inconvenience to bystanders if he's on a commercial flight for someone who arguably hasn't directly harmed US interests himself, and that's before you factor in the fact that Trump doesn't seem to care all that much about the issue - and actually seemed pro-Wikileaks when they were harming Hillary Clinton's presidential run. I'm sure if it came to it, the UK, Australia, and Ecuador, wouldn't do much to intervene other than make some political platitudes to the press (if that), but ultimately he's really just an inconvenience and probably not worth the effort.

          A regular extradition request seems more likely, especially if he's already back in custody for his bail violation, but even then then UK has been getting a lot less willing to extradite to the US of late, with the legal process taking years either way, again - a lot of cost and effort. It's highly likely he'll be free and clear of the bail issues long before that process completes, so what does the UK do to keep him under the thumb then - house arrest and a tracking bracelet again? Besides, is the US *really* that desperate for Assange to face trial (and for what, exactly?), or even just disappear, or is it just Assange's paranoia being hyped up to further his image as some kind of a martyr to a cause?
          --
          UNIX? They're not even circumcised! Savages!
          • (Score: 2) by Pav on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:41PM (1 child)

            by Pav (114) on Thursday March 29 2018, @11:41PM (#660234)

            Assange is not a UK citizen, and currently Australia has a neocon-friendly government in power. The US establishment would probably LOVE another excuse to call Trump a Putin puppet, and I wouldn't put it past the Aussie government to privately pressure the UK to have him extradited.

            • (Score: 2) by zocalo on Friday March 30 2018, @11:35AM

              by zocalo (302) on Friday March 30 2018, @11:35AM (#660338)
              Yes, Assange is by birth Australian but has been granted Ecuadorian citizenship. The Australian government seems to have washed their hands of him though as I don't recall a single official statement in the media about his situation from them, so unless he actually returns to Australia or walks into an Australian consulate/embassy I doubt that is going to change, no matter what might transpire. As for the claimed health issues, there's one very good reason why he'd choose go through that - paranoia. Assange seems 100% certain that the US wants him to face trial, despite the only evidence for this being limited to statements made in an unofficial capacity, but as long as he thinks - rightly or wrongly - that he's going to get extradited and convicted, then he's going to remain in his self-imposed house-arrest.
              --
              UNIX? They're not even circumcised! Savages!
          • (Score: 2) by Pav on Friday March 30 2018, @12:09AM (1 child)

            by Pav (114) on Friday March 30 2018, @12:09AM (#660241)

            BTW, Assange has required a root canal for two years, and has some other undisclosed health issues that are reportedly life threatening. One wouldn't take that amount of pain and health deterioration for no reason.

        • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:35PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:35PM (#660123)

          Only fools make light of the long arm of the USA and play down the threat.

          The USA bothers with the likes of Kim Dotcom and hackers https://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jul/08/russia-mps-son-seleznev-arrest-us-secret-service [theguardian.com]

          See also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evo_Morales_grounding_incident [wikipedia.org]

          So if you're Assange you'd definitely should be cautious.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 01 2018, @06:03AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 01 2018, @06:03AM (#661062)

        Assange's statement is rather liberal with the truth - he's only a prisoner detained for eight years because he *chose* to flee to the Ecuadorian Embassy and inflict that on himself, and he's also equally free to pack his bags and walk out the front door. Sure, that might result in having to face up to the consequences of the fact he breached the conditions of his bail, but IIRC that's currently the only thing that the UK justice system has on him?

        Are you really that simple?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @02:05PM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @02:05PM (#659961)

      Yeah, justice in the United Kingdom is very even handed. Grooming gangs always get punished, and there's no way a Scotsman would be convicted of a crime just for cracking an edgy joke about how Nazis were the worst thing he could think of.

  • (Score: 3, Funny) by DannyB on Thursday March 29 2018, @01:39PM (5 children)

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 29 2018, @01:39PM (#659948) Journal

    Isn't internet access a human right? [wikipedia.org]

    Sort of like other human rights like free food, shelter, clothing, health care, smart phones, vacations and retirement? And the right to not see or hear any uncomfortable ideas?

    --
    You can not have fun on the weak days but you can on the weakened.
    • (Score: -1, Redundant) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @02:36PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @02:36PM (#659977)

      Shut up stupid. Human rights are what we decide they are as a species. If you expect to live with the dignity of a zoo animal good for you

    • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:41PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @06:41PM (#660126)
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @08:14PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 29 2018, @08:14PM (#660181)

      Ick, if that was really a joke then the delivery was terrible. If your joke was that basic human rights are stupid then that is a bigger problem.

    • (Score: 2) by Pav on Friday March 30 2018, @02:18AM (1 child)

      by Pav (114) on Friday March 30 2018, @02:18AM (#660268)

      All of those (except the last) are considered important enough to be supported by the government in Australia, though our current neo-liberal government is engaging in the same losing strategy the US has been on for much longer. The US elite are like captains putting holes on the other end of their own ship so they can be lifted into the air as the other half sinks below the waves... they're in denial that they'll be dragged down soon enough.

      • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Friday March 30 2018, @01:24PM

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Friday March 30 2018, @01:24PM (#660352) Journal

        1. Rearrange the deck chairs.
        2. There is no problem so great that it cannot be solved by more government regulation.

        --
        You can not have fun on the weak days but you can on the weakened.
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