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Ecuador said on Thursday that it had decided to grant political asylum to Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks. Seeking asylum, Mr. Assange has been holed up for two months in the Ecuadorean embassy in London, where the police scuffled with and arrested some of his supporters on Thursday.

The announcement was made by the Ecuadorean foreign minister, Ricardo Patiño, at a news conference in Quito. He also said he hoped Britain would permit Mr. Assange to leave the embassy in London for Ecuador — a request Britain has rejected, saying it has a legal obligation to extradite Mr. Assange to Sweden, where is wanted to face questioning about allegations of sexual misbehavior.

The minister said his government had taken the decision after the authorities in Britain, Sweden and the United States had refused to give guarantees that, if Mr. Assange were extradited to Sweden, he would not then be sent on to America to face other charges.

Read more at The New York Times

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