WASHINGTON, October 19, 2016 — Ecuadorian officials have admitted to restricting WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s internet, after WikiLeaks released thousands of pages relating to the DNC and Hillary Clinton. This sudden attack on Assange shows that he has angered the people targeted in the leaked files.
The Ecuadorian government said it restricted Assange’s internet access because they “respect other nations’ sovereignty and doesn’t interfere or support any candidate in foreign elections.” The acknowledgement by the Ecuadorian government follows a tweet by Wikileaks alleging that Ecuador had terminated Assange’s access to the internet following the release of Clinton’s speeches to Goldman Sachs.
— Michael P. Shipley (@michaelpshipley) October 19, 2016
Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012, when he was granted asylum by Ecuador. Swedish law enforcement is interested in questioning Assange over an alleged rape that took place in 2010, and are expected to meet with him on November 14, along with his legal team.
WikiLeaks alleges that Secretary of State John Kerry worked with Ecuador to shut down Assange’s internet, but State Department officials denied the Department did such a thing. Along with Assange, the U.S. is blaming Russian hackers for attempting to tilt this year’s election in Donald Trump’s favor.
A decade ago, Julian Assange laid out his goal: make a political party too afraid to use phones or email. https://t.co/iI2zB4SfT5
— Nicholas Thompson (@nxthompson) October 19, 2016
“The recent disclosures of alleged hacked emails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts … These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process. Such activity is not new to Moscow—the Russians have used similar tactics and techniques across Europe and Eurasia, for example, to influence public opinion there,” a Homeland Security statement said.
Ecuador claims that the restriction will not deny WikiLeaks the ability to “carry out its journalistic activities.” Ecuador’s decision to cut off Assange from the internet raises the question, are foreign leaders attempting to force him out of “hiding” so they can arrest him and put him on trial for the massive dump of documents and trouble he has caused for leaders all over the world?