Julian Assange Sues Ecuador Over 'Rights Violations' At Embassy That Houses Him
Julian Assange is suing Ecuador for better asylum terms where he continues to live in country's London embassy.
WikiLeaks has accused the South American country of threatening to remove protections granted to Assange during his six year asylum stay at the embassy.
According to a statement released by WikiLeaks, the legal action is over alleged limited access to communications and the internet, after Assange was "summarily cut off" from the outside world.
"We believe that that protocol violates fundamental rights, it limits the exercising of the right to a defence, it affects the privacy of people that don't have anything to do with the process beyond the possibility of them spending some time with or being with the affected person (Assange)," said Assange's lawyer, Baltasar Garzon,
“He has been held in inhumane conditions for more than six years.
“Even people who are imprisoned have phone calls paid for by the state."
In early October, Ecuador introduced new rules for his embassy stay, and Garzon told reporters these were not made in consultation with the WikiLeaks founder.
The new rules include Assange having to pay for his own medical bills and phone calls, as well as having to clean up after his pet cat.
READ MORE: Julian Assange Quits As Wikileaks Editor
Assange is also challenging 'special protocols' which require anyone who visits him -- including journalists and lawyers -- to reveal all private and political details of meetings to Ecuador. This includes pass codes to any electronic devices brought in.
The protocol allows Ecuador to use this information and "share with agencies." WikiLeaks said.
The Australian national -- who was granted Ecuadorian citizenship in January this year -- fears being removed from the Ecuadorian embassy and extradited to the U.S.
The case is to be heard in an Ecuadorian domestic court next week.
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