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  • Gaping digital divide in Commonwealth: Study
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  • PM Modi not accompanying President Trump to Agra, Defence, security, energy tie ups likely
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  • Over 200 militants still active in Kashmir, 25 killed in 12 operations since Jan in J&K: DGP
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Human rights violation: Assange files legal action against Ecuador

London, Oct 20 (UNI) Internet activist and the founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange has reportedly launched a legal action against the Ecuadorian government for violating his fundamental rights.
Assange's legal plea, to be heard in a domestic court next week, seems to be against the 'Special Protocol' instituted by the embassy as per the new guidelines of the government, making his political asylum contingent on censoring his freedom of opinion, speech and association.
For the past few months Assange's access to the internet has been severely restricted and the protocol has further enforced journalists, lawyers and others meeting with him to disclose their private or political details to the Ecuador Embassy officials.
Giving an account of the severity of the restrictions imposed, Wikileaks said on Friday that the embassy has now gone to the extent of refusing journalists and human rights organisations to see him and also installed jammers to block phone calls and internet access.
As per Assange's lawyer, by banning him from making political statements, an attempt has been made to 'summarily cut-off' his access to the out side world.
The whistle-blower has been holed up at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London since 2012 when he was granted asylum as part of a bid to avoid extradition to Sweden where he was facing allegations of sexual assault. Though the case has been dropped, Assange has preferred to stay as the Embassy provides him a safe heaven against any United States extradition in relation to the cybersecurity breach case, notes the CNN.
Wikileaks has claimed that the restrictions imposed on Mr. Assange are a result of the succumbing of the Ecuadorian government, that witnessed a change in President-ship in 2017, under concerted US pressure. To highlight this,WikiLeaks has referred to an incident when a US congressmen had written an open letter to Ecuador’s new President Lenin Moreno, saying that in order to advance “crucial matters pertaining economic cooperation; counter-narcotics assistance and to the possible return of a USAID mission to Ecuador the two countries must first resolve a significant challenge created by the previous President, Rafael Correa, i.e. the status of Assange, as relayed by the Independent.
These impositions seem to remain in place until Assange adheres to the dictates of the new guidelines that are nothing but an attempt to 'gag him out of existence.'
UNI XC PS 1636
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