Russia Hatched Plan To Help Assange Escape London Last Year

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On Friday, it was revealed that Russian officials also deliberated over whether to help Mr Assange escape the embassy.

A bold plot that would have seen Wikileaks founder Julian Assange smuggled from the Ecuadorian embassy in London to Russian Federation in 2017 has been revealed.

The Foreign Office responded a couple of days later, stating: "We did not consider that Mr Assange enjoys any type of privileges and immunities under the Vienna Convention".

"Special designation" refers to the Ecuadorean president's right to name political allies to a fixed number of diplomatic posts even if they are not career diplomats. The Ecuadorean foreign ministry could not be reached for comment.

Were Assange to leave the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he has lived since 2012, he would nearly certainly be arrested by British authorities.

Ecuador last 19 December approved a "special designation in favour of Mr Julian Assange so that he can carry out functions at the Ecuadorean Embassy in Russian Federation", according to the letter written to opposition legislator Paola Vintimilla.

The Russian Embassy did not immediately respond to Ars' request for comment late Friday evening.

Citing at least four, traditionally anonymous, sources, the Guardian wrote that Moscow was plotting to smuggle Assange out of London on Christmas eve a year ago, but dropped the plan because it was "deemed too risky".

"Another example of disinformation and fake news by British media", the embassy said on Twitter, commenting on a publication in the Guardian, which claimed that "Russian diplomats held secret talks in London past year with people close to Julian Assange to assess whether they could help him flee the United Kingdom".

US President Donald Trump faces an investigation into whether his campaign colluded with Russian Federation to win that election.

The 47-year-old Assange remains in hiding in a back room of the central London building six years after losing a legal battle against extradition to Sweden for questioning on allegations of rape and sexual assault. Two sources familiar with the inner workings of the Ecuadorian embassy said that Fidel Narváez, a close confidant of Assange who until recently served as Ecuador's London consul, had served as a point of contact with Moscow.

He stated he did not come into possession of the emails from Russian Federation, but did not deny they could have been handed to him by a third party.

The Ecuadorian President has said Mr Assange can not remain in asylum for life.

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