Now that Ecuador has granted Julian Assange political asylum, maybe that means he won’t be extradited to Sweden. So, unfortunately, we may never know the truth of whether he transgressed the bounds of consent by failing to use or intentionally removing condoms during otherwise consensual sex. Some Wikileaks boosters have already started treating Ecuador like an international paragon of justice and liberty as a result.
Of course, the various journalists who have been silenced by the Correa administration’s various actions to quash internal dissent might take issue with the theory that Ecuador is a safe haven for the free press.
As SF Gate reported in February 2012, just 6 months before giving Assange political asylum:
Columnist Emilio Palacio had the temerity to question actions by President Rafael Correa. In democracies, this is recognized as a duty of the press: to examine the moves of those in power. News organizations in free societies take this responsibility seriously – or should.
The angered president responded by filing criminal libel charges against the paper, Palacio and three newspaper executives, a move designed to shut down the publication and send a message: Forget about freedom of the press in this country. The four men were sentenced to three years in prison, and the newspaper was told to cough up $40 million.
That, of course, only goes on when the Ecuadoran regime isn’t too busy selling out the indigenous peoples of the Andes to international mining interests.
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