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Correa: Sweden can talk to Assange in London

Correa: Sweden can talk to Assange in London

Published: 27 Oct 2012 08:12 GMT+02:00
Updated: 27 Oct 2012 08:12 GMT+02:00

Sweden can send a prosecutor to the Ecuadoran embassy in Britain to interrogate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, the South American country's president said Friday.

"This problem has a simple solution ... We propose that a Swedish prosecutor come to interrogate him at Ecuador's embassy in London," Rafael Correa said in an interview with Chilean radio station Cooperativa.

"It's perfectly legal," he added.

Correa, on a visit to Chile, added that precedents for such a move exist, noting that "this happened on other occasions."

Assange sought asylum at the Ecuadoran embassy in the British capital in mid June in a bid to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he faces questioning over alleged rape and sexual assault.

Quito gave the 41-year-old Australian asylum in August but Britain has refused to grant him safe passage out of the country, and he remains holed up in the embassy, placing Ecuador in a diplomatic stalemate with Britain.

Assange denies the allegations against him, and claims he could eventually be extradited by Sweden to the United States for prosecution over the WikiLeaks website's publication of hundreds of thousands of classified US documents.

If Stockholm does not want to send a prosecutor to London, it should provide Assange with a guarantee that he will not be extradited to a third country, Correa said in the same interview.

On Wednesday, Ecuadoran Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino told reporters that he had requested a meeting with Britain to discuss Assange's worsening health, who Quito claims is losing weight and suffering vision problems.

Assange said in an interview published September 30th that his health was "slowly deteriorating" in the embassy, adding that he had "a racking cough."

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

09:42 October 27, 2012 by SimonDMontfort
The Ecuadorians made something like this offer months ago, in August this year, but the Swedes rejected it.
12:25 October 27, 2012 by graywolf
Oh, for heaven's sake ! He is playing the latest "sick" card now ! The Ecuadoreans

should be ashamed of themselves for being taken in by this fraudster. Isn't it

enough that he has willingly caused his sponsors to lose thousands ? Why should he not face justice whether innocent or guilty - like most of us do.

This is a moral coward of the first order. Stick to your guns, Sweden !
13:57 October 27, 2012 by what would thomas paine do
Rap News 5 featuring Julian Assange
15:01 October 27, 2012 by jeff9556
The possibility for this has been on the table the whole time, because its normal, in fact its totally abnormal for someone to be extradited for "questioning".

Look, here are just two of the most damming facts in this case, since the media in this country appears to consider the facts superfluous to the story:

- Sweden has issued a European Arrest Warrant and an Interpol Red Notice in order to further investigate four allegations of sexual offences. No charges have been filed against Julian Assange.

- The Swedish prosecutor, Marianne Ny, has not given Julian Assange or his lawyers information on the allegations against him in writing, which violates the Swedish Code of Procedure (RB 23:18) and the European Convention of Human Rights (article 5), and the EU Fundamental Charter on Human Rights.

re: http://justice4assange.com/

So, before you go off half cocked without broad information (the Swedish media has consistently presented a totally one-eyed pro-prosecution view), read up a bit and get your facts strait. Certainly Assange was no angle, but nor was he any criminal.

The case stinks to high heaven and Swedes should be taking a long hard look at what the hell is going on in the Justice system, regardless of what Assange did or did not do, that is largely beside the point to be frank, the real issue here is much deeper and broader and affects all of us.
18:16 October 27, 2012 by ILIOS ELLAS
Please help promote this link wherever you can; if you believe in freedom of expression and freedom of the press.

Julian Assange for the Nobel prize for freedom of the press:

www.avaaz.org/en/petition/Julian_Assange_for_Nobel_prize_Freedom_of_the_Press/

Lets see how "Noble" the Norwegians and their righteous Swede neighbors are or claim to be, since they offered Obama the Nobel peace prize!
20:23 October 27, 2012 by johan rebel
Oh, poor little Julian has a cough. Not just any cough, but a nastty racking cough. Well, maby poor sick little Julian should go a see a doctor, then. There are lots of those in London, and they surely see lots of people with racking coughs. Maybe one of them could prescribe some nice cough syrup to make poor sick little Julian feel better, so he can travel to Sweden without coughing nasty germs in all drections.
21:56 October 27, 2012 by Flutterbye
So someone in the embassy can't go out and get a bottle of cough mixture?......what a load of c***
22:01 October 27, 2012 by bcterry
Assange turned to the U.K. law to plead his case, after numerous appeals, he lost, and then ran, leaving those who posted his bail holding the bag.

If assange is sick, i'm sure the U.K. will give him the best of care after he turns himself in for breaching their extradition decision.
22:04 October 28, 2012 by Tiny Red Ant
When will Correa understand that Sweden has said no. Assange had a chance to argue the legality and the nature of the arrest warrant in British court. In all three instances he lost, that does not include the opportunity in Swedish courts.

Ecuador has to either decide if they have given Assange asylum or not. Inviting Sweden to "question" Assange in there embassy suggests that they have not given him asylum.

Assange is now a fugitive in Sweden and the UK. He has no where to go, other than to surrender to UK authorities.
12:55 October 29, 2012 by Tiny Red Ant
@Arbed

Countries do grant asylum for people wanted for crimes. Also, according to Ecuadorian law a person accused of a crime can be extradited. That is someone who has not been formally charged with any crime.

This suggestion that Sweden can interview Assange in their embassy demonstrates that Ecuador is very uncertain as to what to do. This includes them requesting to the UK about allowing Assange safe passage for medical attention.

Yes, the MIA is well know, but is not used for those accused of crime. It is a mechanism used to allow law enforcement agency to coordinate criminal investigations in different countries. For those accused of crimes the mechanism is a extradition request.

Other that animated supporters of Assange and those who are waiting for Assange to go to Sweden to answer the accusations against Assange, no body cares about him. American prosecutors might care about Assange, but they have yet to find any crime that might be connect to Wikileaks.

"Ecuador is offering them an out?" Assange is being accused of sexual assaulting two women. The only out Ecuador is looking for is one to safe face in the quandrum they created for themselves.

The humor is in the fact that once Sweden felt that Assange would not return to Sweden on his own free will an EAW was issued. Now, some believe that Sweden will fly all the way to England after going through all that work. They made their decision on how they would conduct their investigation at that time. They are not going to listen to a country trying to score political points on issues that are of no concern to them.

The only person who can end this is Assange. That is whether it is 1 year or 10 years from now. However, it will end with Assange being in Sweden.
13:47 October 30, 2012 by Tiny Red Ant
MIA that was my mistake and should have been MLA.

Now back to the MLA agreement. It is a mechanism that is designed for the requested state to assist in any criminal proceedings.

That is assistance through a correct venue and those a competent authority. In other words in a court or police station, which aren't an embassy. Also with the use of a judge, lawyers, or other competent. It is Ecuador's responsibility to conduct the interview.

If Ecuador is serious about letting Swedish authorities interview Assange then Ecuador has to send Assange to Sweden. Yes, that element does exist in "Inter-American Convention on mutual assistance in criminal matters."

Ecuador either has to accept that Assange's life is a stake or there is a real criminal investigation on going. This probably he might be sent to the US does not count. However, some do not seem to understand this.

MLA treats and conventions are generally the same between countries. It is a mechanism for a country to request the assistance of another country in criminal matters. In this cause it would be Sweden requesting the assistance of Ecuador. However, grabbing for legal mechanisms this seems to have been missed.

One important note please provide the link to the actual law or statue to complement an opinion on such law or statute.
00:50 November 2, 2012 by Tiny Red Ant
All a grand jury is a criminal investigation under US laws. Many countries have done away with such systems and depend only on a prosecutors. However, that would be a constitution change in the US. Nothing really special about it.

If Wikileaks has not broken any laws in obtaining the cables and other information then there is absolutely no concern. Additionally, such an investigation in only that an investigation similar to that instigated against Assange in Sweden. If Assange or anyone associated with Wikileaks wants to worry about it, then they might not have been as honest as they have lead others to believe.

Ecuador has granted Assange asylum based on Quito's belief that Assange's life or freedom is at treat. If their belief is genuine Quito's primary concern about Assange should be his safety. That is Ecuador should provide doctors, or any other assistance that Assange might need. They should also try to negotiate his safe passage to Ecuador with both Sweden and the UK.

Based on Ecuador's position the idea of having Sweden interview Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy is absurd. One reason it goes directly against Ecuador's belief that Assange's safe is at risk. The second reason is that it hits at the belief that Assange is accused of a crime.

Under the MLA it would be Ecuador that will have to conduct the interview and not Sweden. They will have to provide the lawyers, judges, and law enforcement officers if they are going to "assist." That further perplexes the reason as to way give Assange asylum.

There are thousand of extradition completed in the year between various countries for various crimes including sex assault. The rules for what is an extraditable offense is outlined in various extraditions treaties and conventions. "One legal expert" amounts to nothing in the number of cases held every year. The "proportionality" was argued in court, and that point was lost.

As stated before "statues of law" is appreciated. The reason is that it becomes quite disappointing reading an opinion only to find that the opinion is inconsistent with the law at the most basic level.
17:34 November 30, 2012 by Ranger
Be advised that no one can trust Sweden! The Swedish judicial system is filled with incompetent corrupt judges who make phony doms, lie, falsify documents, take bribes and who allow perjury and fraud to be committed in their kangaroo courts!
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