The diplomatic impasse over Julian Assange's six-year stay in Ecuador's London embassy is coming to a head, a source close to the WikiLeaks founder said on Monday, after media reports the South American country would rescind his political asylum. Greenwald first drew widespread public attention by publishing data provided by the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. That bail violation happened when he obtained asylum from Ecuador rather than return to court for a hearing on his attempt to resist extradition to Sweden to face sexual assault allegations.
An agreement over the Wikileaks founder is "imminent" and could be finalised when Ecuador's president Lenín Moreno visits Britain this week, sources say.
Mr Moreno, who inherited the diplomatically sensitive asylum affair when he was elected in early-2017, has previously described him as a "stone in my shoe".
Ecuadorean President Lenin Moreno is set to finalize an agreement with the United Kingdom government to lift Assange's asylum status, The Intercept's Glenn Greenwald reported, citing a source within the Ecuador's foreign ministry. According to Greenwald, such a development could lead to Assange being sent to jail for at least one more year "under his best-case scenario", which would mean that he would have spent almost a decade imprisoned "despite never having been charged with, let alone convicted of, any crime".
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Swedish prosecutors already dropped their investigation a year ago into sexual assault allegations that had been filed against Assange. He can not be arrested inside the embassy.
Mr Assange has said he fears being extradited to the US and questioned about Wikileaks, which released hacked emails from Hillary Clinton's camp during the US Presidential race in 2016.
In May, Moreno ordered the withdrawal of additional security from Ecuador's small diplomatic headquarters in London.
Meanwhile, the Obama administration wanted to prosecute Assange and WikiLeaks, but backed away because of the trouble it could cause for USA newspapers who reported on him. Moreno will also travel to Madrid, notes Greenwald, where Spanish officials are angry over Assange's denouncing of Spain's government over human rights against protesters.