Ecuador granted citizenship to Assange and requested that he be given diplomatic status. This would enable Assange to leave the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he had been for several years.
However, Britain rejected Ecuador’s request, and since May last year, Assange has been detained at Belmarsh High Security Prison outside London, awaiting legal repercussions for breaching British bail rules.
Assange had requested to be released on bail pending trial, but did not receive one in January this year. In January, the same court also ruled that Assange would not be extradited to the United States because his health was too fragile.
Now an Ecuadorian court has ruled that citizenship has been revoked, a decision that was made unfairly according to Carlos Poveda, the Ecuadorian lawyer for Julian Assange, reports ABC.
To news agency ap Poveda says the procedure did not follow the rules and Assange was not allowed to speak.
However, this was rejected by the country’s foreign ministry, which says it has “acted independently and followed the legal process”.
Carlos Poveda has announced that he will request an explanation of the decision.
Experts: Another blow for Assange
Paul Range, a professor of international law at Stockholm University, says the court’s decision in Ecuador is unlikely to have any major implications for Assange’s future.
It means another setback for Assange, but with no major consequences. He is in the UK and can be extradited to the US, which is a matter between the US and the UK, says Paul Range.
If Assange had gone to Ecuador and settled there and renounced his Australian citizenship, it would have been an entirely different matter, he would have had a deeper connection with Ecuador and the country could have made diplomatic progress. But now Ecuador has a new government and it is unlikely that the government will want to act in this matter, says Paul Range.
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