Assange could spend 'years' holed up in Ecuadorian Embassy in asylum bid, says expert
London, June 23 (ANI): Wikileaks founder Julian Assange could spend years holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy as his bid for asylum could take 'a long time to resolve,' an expert has said.
Paul Whiteway, the London director of diplomatic consultancy International Diplomat, also said that he was doubtful about whether Assange, who faces allegations of rape in Sweden, would be allowed to leave the country even if granted asylum.
He pointed out that it could lead to other suspected criminals trying to seek refuge in foreign embassies.
"The issues involved could take a long time to resolve. There have been cases of people spending months or even years in an embassy while these issues are resolved," the Telegraph quoted Whiteway, as saying.
"There are precedents of people taking refuge in foreign embassies which have gone on for years, although I don't think that this will take years," he added.
Whiteway also pointed out that 'taking refuge in an embassy is one thing but leaving it and going to the country where that embassy belongs is quite another.'
He also stressed that Ecuador would be keen on not aggravating Britain and Sweden, regardless of President Rafael Correa's criticism of the US or his offer of asylum to Assange.
"Another key thing is Ecuador building and maintaining a relationship with Britain and Sweden. It's not just a question of Correa's attitude to the US. I think their bluff has been called in a way that's quite embarrassing for them," he added. (ANI)
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