(Because we're following an ongoing event, this story may be updated and/or revised throughout the night.)
The Wikileaks founder is being given asylum in London's Ecuadorean embassy. Here's the livestream coverage
There are four police vans surrounding the embassy, each carrying twelve officers.
At this moment, the Brits have threatened to storm the embassy.
At a press conference on Wednesday, Patiño released details of a letter he said was delivered through a British embassy official in Quito, the capital of the South American country.
Chances are remote
The letter said: "You need to be aware that there is a legal base in the UK, the Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act 1987, that would allow us to take actions in order to arrest Mr Assange in the current premises of the embassy."
that Assange will be given protection for long. Assange's mother believes that the real motive power
behind this outrage is the United States:
“What the US wants, the US gets from its allies, regardless of if it’s legal or if it’s ethical or in breach of human or legal rights,” she told reporters in Australia.
Here is the official Wikileaks statement on the threat to storm the Embassy:
In a communication this morning to the government of Ecuador, the UK threatened to forcefully enter the Ecuadorian embassy in London and arrest Julian Assange.
The UK claims the power to do so under the Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act 1987.
This claim is without basis.
By midnight, two hours prior to the time of this announcement, the embassy had been surrounded by police, in a menacing show of force.
Any transgression against the sanctity of the embassy is a unilateral and shameful act, and a violation of the Vienna Convention, which protects embassies worldwide.
This threat is designed to preempt Ecuador’s imminent decision on whether it will grant Julian Assange political asylum, and to bully Ecuador into a decision that is agreeable to the United Kingdom and its allies.
WikiLeaks condemns in the strongest possible terms the UK’s resort to intimidation.
A threat of this nature is a hostile and extreme act, which is not proportionate to the circumstances, and an unprecedented assault on the rights of asylum seekers worldwide.
We draw attention to the fact that the United Nations General Assembly has unanimously declared in Resolution 2312 (1967) that
"the grant of asylum. . . is a peaceful and humanitarian act and that, as such, it cannot be regarded as unfriendly by any other State."
Pursuant to this resolution, a decision to grant asylum cannot be construed by another State as an unfriendly act. Neither can there be diplomatic consequences for granting asylum.
We remind the public that these extraordinary actions are being taken to detain a man who has not been charged with any crime in any country.
WikiLeaks joins the Government of Ecuador in urging the UK to resolve this situation according to peaceful norms of conduct.
We further urge the UK government to show restraint, and to consider the dire ramifications of any violation of the elementary norms of international law.
We ask that the UK respect Ecuador’s sovereign right to deliver a decision of its own making on Julian Assange’s asylum bid.
Noting that Ecuador has called for emergency summits of OAS and UNASUR in response to this development, WikiLeaks asks those bodies to support Ecuador’s rights in this matter, and to oppose any attempts to coerce a decision.
We note with interest that this development coincides with the UK Secretary of State William Hague’s assumption of executive responsibilities during the vacation of the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister.
Mr Hague’s department, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, has overseen the negotiations to date with Ecuador in the matter of Mr Assange’s asylum bid.
If Mr Hague has, as would be expected, approved this decision, WikiLeaks calls for his immediate resignation.
Obviously, the Brits can't seriously expect us to believe that they are going to this kind of trouble just to make sure that Assange faces "sexual coercion" charges in Sweden. Everyone knows that the Swedish law is, by British and American standards, inane. In Sweden, "sexual coercion" is a legal term broad enough to include using soft music to seduce a woman. (Despite this, our media continue to claim falsely that Assange has been accused of rape
Nevertheless, the Brits are saying they intend to storm the embassy, in violation of all international norms, to uphold that
nonsense. Stockholm will, no doubt, immediately turn Assange over the U.S., which hopes to imprison or impose a death sentence on someone who is not a citizen and who has broken no law.
Just as obviously, the sexual coercion charges were entirely trumped up. In an earlier post, I quoted a Swedish blog which described the accuser, Anna Ardin, as a zealot
who uses the argot of feminism to justify their personal psychopathology. That rhetoric, I now believe, is pure theater. I think she took a payoff from Uncle Sam. This alleged left-wing feminist gave the game away when she hired a spooked-up law firm.
So what are Uncle Sam and Her Majesty's government protecting? Here's one answer: Trapwire.
Wikileaks has revealed a plan to use spy cameras in public places and facial recognition software to keep tabs on everyone everywhere, 24/7. As always, terrorism and pedophilia provide the big excuses for transforming our society into the proverbial Orwellian nightmare.
Some have expressed doubts that Trapwire could really forecast terrorist acts based on data from cameras, but Rik Ferguson, security consultant at Trend Micro, said the software for such systems had existed for some time.
"There's a lot of crossover between CCTV and facial recognition," he said. "It's feasible to have a camera looking for suspicious behaviour – for example, in a computer server room it could recognise someone via facial recognition or your gait, then can identify them from the card they swipe to get in, and then know whether it's suspicious if they're meant to be a cleaner and they sit down at a computer terminal."
Let's not be naive. Trapwire has nothing to do with "terrorism." Trapwire is all about preventing a "1789" reaction when your new Libertarian overlords take away Social Security, Medicare, unemployment insurance and the minimum wage.