Ecuador grants citizenship to WikiLeaks founder Assange

Julian Assange has been sheltering at its London embassy for five years

Ecuador grants citizenship to WikiLeaks founder Assange

Ecuador has granted citizenship to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who has been sheltering at its London embassy for five years to avoid arrest, Foreign Minister Maria Fernanda Espinosa announced Thursday.

Espinosa told a press conference in Quito that Assange, an Australian, became an Ecuadoran citizen on December 12.

As a result, she said Ecuador had asked London to recognize Assange as a diplomat, which would give him immunity from arrest, a request Britain has refused.

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