A visit to those supporting Julian Assange outside the Ecuadorean Embassy
Yesterday, as I walked to The Rib Room at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower with Alexandra Naylor, I came across a media camp opposite the Ecuadorean Embassy in Hans Crescent, Knightsbridge.
On the other side of the road, directly next to the embassy, were four protestors and as neither of us knew what they were doing there, we decided to engage them in conversation. It turned out that these perfectly polite, yet somewhat misguided individuals were there to support Julian Assange, who is supposedly holed up inside.
The Wikileaks founder, who faces accusations of sex assaults made by two Swedish women in August 2010, we were told, breached his bail conditions and arrived at the embassy on Tuesday evening. It is believed he has remained there since and Ben Griffin, one of his supporters, told us:
“Julian is at risk of assassination if he is extradited to America via Sweden. American politicians have publicly said they want him dead.”
This, I’d suggest, is utter nonsense and further conversation with two Ecuadoreans revealed a similar misguided attitude to this case. Equally odd, I later learnt, is that Assange’s high-profile backers are now backtracking somewhat in their attitude to this cause célèbre. Jemima Khan, who provided £20,000 to Assange’s bail fund, commented:
“I expected him to face the allegations. I am as surprised as anyone by this.”
Mr Assange, a former computer hacker, should face justice just like anyone else. Sweden is a perfectly civilised country and if indeed he is innocent, he should stand and be counted. He should jolly well stop wasting police time and he should jolly well realise that he is not above the law.
For more information about the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, go to: http://ecuador.embassyhomepage.com
For more information about the campaign to free Julian Assange, go to: http://freeassange.org