UNITED NATIONS — Ecuador’s foreign minister said Monday that there is no set date for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to regain access to the Internet at the Ecuadorean Embassy in London, where he has taken shelter since 2012.
Ecuador’s government cut off Assange’s Internet connection in March after he made social media posts decrying the arrest of a separatist politician from Spain’s Catalonia region.
“On several occasions he has agreed on not intervening in internal politics of third-party countries and, unfortunately, he has not complied with his commitment, so for the time being he is not allowed to have access to the Internet,” Foreign Minister Maria Fernanda Espinosa said.
“It is not a matter of censorship,” she said in an interview at the United Nations’ headquarters in New York.
Ecuador gave Assange asylum after he sought refuge in the embassy to avoid extradition to Sweden for an investigation of sex-related allegations. Sweden dropped the case, but Assange remains subject to arrest in Britain for jumping bail. He also fears a possible U.S. extradition request based on his leaking of classified State Department documents.
The foreign minister said Ecuador has asked Assange to comply with “his obligations” when it comes to “respecting international law.”
“We have asked him to do so, and he has said he would [comply],” she said. “Unfortunately, he did not on several occasions.”
Ecuador has tried to find a solution that would allow Assange to leave without the threat of arrest, but it has had no success.