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From embassy refuge, Assange calls for end to WikiLeaks 'witch hunt'

Marc Ferranti and Mikael Ricknäs | Aug. 21, 2012
Speaking from a balcony at the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he has sought asylum, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange Sunday called on governments including the U.S. to stop persecution of political whistle blowers and gave no indication that the stalemate over his extradition from the U.K. to Sweden, where he faces allegations on sexual offenses, would end anytime soon.

Sweden's Ministry of Justice said it has not received any request for Assange's extradition to the U.S. -- the case against him only concerns offences committed in Sweden.

On a more personal note, Assange also asked his children for forgiveness because of his long absence, and said they will be with each other soon. However, that doesn't seem very likely at this point, unless they come to him.

Ecuador granted Assange asylum on Thursday but the U.K. has refused to grant him passage to Quito because the government is under obligation to comply with court rulings and send him to Stockholm.

There has been no sign of an end to the stalemate, though Assange Sunday said Latin American foreign ministers will be meeting to discuss his situation.

"This Friday there will be an emergency meeting of the foreign ministers of Latin America in Washington D.C. to address this very situation and so I am grateful to the people an governments of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Argentina, Peru, Venezuela and to all other Latin American countries who have come out to defend the right to asylum," Assange said.

Latin American embassies in Washington were not open Sunday to receive calls asking for confirmation of the meeting.


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