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Newsline: New Ecuador leader says ‘hacker’ Assange can stay at embassy

Ecuador’s new President Lenin Moreno criticized Julian Assange as a “hacker” but stressed his country would continue providing asylum to the WikiLeaks founder fleeing international arrest. Moreno, who took office this month, has struck a more critical tone toward Assange than his predecessor, Rafael Correa, who said earlier his country had “done its duty” by granting Assange asylum in 2012. “Mr Assange is a hacker. That’s something we reject and that I in particular personally reject,” said Moreno, who warned Assange during the presidential campaign to “not interfere” in Ecuadoran politics. “But I respect the situation in which he finds himself,” holed up in Ecuador’s embassy in London, Moreno said. Earlier this month, Swedish prosecutors dropped a seven-year rape allegation against Assange and withdrew the European arrest warrant that had prompted his flight to the embassy and an appeal for asylum. However, British police have said they still intend to arrest Assange if he leaves the London embassy after he violated the terms of his probation in Britain in 2012 when he took refuge in the diplomatic mission. “It seems the British government is not going to grant safe passage, meaning that Mr Assange can continue living in the Ecuadoran embassy, and we will respect that condition,” Moreno said.

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/ecuador-leader-says-hacker-assange-stay-embassy-232354000.html

Newsline: French Embassy in UK Opens Crisis Unit Following Manchester Attack

The French Consulate in London has opened a crisis unit, making available emergency telephone numbers for information about the victims of the recent deadly terror attack in Manchester, a Sputnik correspondent reported Tuesday. On Monday night, a deadly explosion hit the Manchester Arena at the end of US singer Ariana Grande’s concert. Following the blast, Burnham had already expressed his condolences over the attack. The blast left at least 22 people dead, including children, and almost 60 injured. Several people are still missing. The French embassy is calling on the citizens of France to mark themselves as safe via Facebook. The French Consulate in London has also opened a crisis unit to receive the calls of everybody who cannot reach their close ones.

https://sputniknews.com/europe/201705231053894150-france-uk-manchester-attack/

Newsline: US London Embassy ‘Closely Monitoring’ Manchester Attack

The US Embassy in London is closely monitoring the attack in Manchester, England and is ready to provide consular assistance to any citizens affected by the event, a Department of State spokesperson told Sputnik. “The US Embassy in London is monitoring the situation closely,” the State Department official stated. “We stand ready to provide all possible consular assistance should we become aware of any affected US citizens.” Authorities in Manchester, England confirmed 19 have been killed and 50 others injured as a result of an explosion at Manchester Arena amid a concert by US singer Ariana Grande.

https://sputniknews.com/us/201705231053879515-us-embassy-monitoring-manchester-attack/

Newsline: Russian Embassy in London joins in US murder speculation

The Russian Embassy in London has joined in the speculation surrounding the unsolved murder of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich. The embassy tweeted an image featuring Rich and Hillary Clinton in the background, with text saying, “Who Killed Seth Rich?” The tweet also says, “#WikiLeaks informer Seth Rich murdered in US but MSM [mainstream media] was so busy accusing Russian hackers to take notice.” Rich, 27, was shot and killed on July 10, 2016, as he was walking home from a bar in Washington, D.C. Police found him still in possession of his credit cards, wallet and phone, and believe the murder was a botched robbery. On July 22, WikiLeaks released 44,053 emails and 17,761 attachments belonging to the DNC. Because Rich had worked for the committee, people on the political right speculated that Rich had been behind the leak, and that the DNC or Clinton may have arranged his murder. The Russian Embassy’s tweet comes days after Rod Wheeler, a private investigator working on behalf of Rich’s family, told a Fox affiliate there was evidence that Rich had communicated with WikiLeaks. A day later, on Tuesday, Fox News reported that a “federal investigator” had corroborated Wheeler’s account, and that an FBI analysis of Rich’s computer showed he had transferred the 44,053 emails and 17,761 attachments to Gavin MacFayden, a man who had ties to WikiLeaks before he died last October.

https://www.rawstory.com/2017/05/russian-embassy-joins-in-seth-rich-murder-speculation/

Newsline: UK police say ‘obliged’ to arrest Assange if he leaves Ecuador’s embassy

British police said Friday that they would have to arrest WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange for breaching his bail if he leaves Ecuador’s embassy after a Swedish rape investigation against him was dropped. The police said a warrant was issued against Assange in 2012 after he failed to hand himself in for extradition to Sweden, adding: “The Metropolitan Police Service is obliged to execute that warrant should he leave the embassy”. The Crown Prosecution Service said that breach of bail is punishable by up to a year in prison or a fine. The police statement said Assange was previously wanted for “an extremely serious offence” in Sweden and the police presence around the embassy had “reflected the serious nature of that crime”. “Now that the situation has changed and the Swedish authorities have discontinued their investigation into that matter. Mr Assange remains wanted for a much less serious offence,” it said. “The MPS will provide a level of resourcing which is proportionate to that offence,” it added. The police ended their round-the-clock guard outside the embassy in October 2015 but said they were strengthening a “covert plan” to prevent his departure. Assange has been granted asylum by Ecuador and has been able to evade justice because he is on Ecuador’s sovereign territory by being in the embassy. The policing outside the embassy has cost millions of pounds, the source of much criticism in Britain.

http://www.news24.com/World/News/uk-police-say-obliged-to-arrest-assange-if-he-leaves-embassy-20170519

Newsline: British ambassador to Austria chased through woodland by ‘massive’ wild boar

Britain’s ambassador to Austria described how he had to flee from a “massive” wild boar as it chased him through woodland in Vienna. Leigh Turner described how he came across a group of the animals while out walking before an adult boar charged at him in the Austrian capital. He was forced to scramble to safety up a pile of wet tree trunks, receiving minor injuries in the process. On his blog, the ambassador said the boar did not catch up with him as he fled through Lainzer Tiergarten nature park.

http://www.standard.co.uk/Front/british-ambassador-to-austria-chased-through-woodland-by-wild-boar-a3541136.html

Newsline: North Korea summons UK’s envoy after claims of CIA assassination attempt

North Korea has reportedly summoned Britain’s ambassador after claiming “heinous terrorists” have entered the country armed with a “biochemical substance” in a bid to assassinate Kim Jong-un. Foreign diplomats, including the UK’s envoy Alastair Morgan, were said to have been summoned to a briefing in Pyongyang where they were told of the plot. A report published by the country’s state-controlled media claimed vice foreign minister Han Song-ryol told the diplomats that “man-killing demons” had entered the secretive nation from South Korea and the US. The CIA and South Korea’s National Intelligence Service (NIS) are behind the alleged assassination attempt, the report claimed. Demanding a “Korean-style war on terrorism”, Han apparently called for a “principled stand to find out all of the terrorist maniacs and mercilessly wipe them out”. Britain’s Government dismissed Pyongyang’s account of the briefing, The Daily Star reported, while confirming Mr Morgan did indeed attend the briefing.

http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/804435/Kim-Jong-un-assassination-plot-British-ambassador-summoned-North-Korea