Reply to post: Re: Gary Bickford Re: Fly me away ...

Ecuador tried to make Julian Assange a diplomat

Jonathan Schwatrz

Re: Gary Bickford Re: Fly me away ...

" Assange off the roof of the building to a waiting ship offshore..." There are several problems with that scenario. Firstly, Greater London is controlled and restricted airspace, so the minute the helicopter deviated from its filed flight plan it would attract attention. The Police have their own helicopters that can follow the Ecuadorean one, and arrest Assange (and the chopper crew) the minute it landed on land if it is inside the UK territorial limits. Should the helicopter try crossing to another European nation instead of landing on the ship then it gets Assange in more trouble as he then can be charged with illegally entering the new country and illegally exiting the UK - more jail time before extradition back to the UK, more jail time in the UK, and still probable extradition to the US. Secondly, any ship can still be boarded by the RN outside the UK's territorial limits if the ship is thought to be engaged in a criminal act such as people smuggling - Assange leaving the UK without passing through proper immigration checks would count as people smuggling. So more jail time in the UK, and still probable extradition to the US. The right to lodge a complaint against the RN boarding would lie with the country the ship is registered with, in this case Ecuador, which would not have a leg to stand on if it was shown they co-operated in Assange illegally leaving the country. Ecuador would have to balance the value of getting Assange out against the loss of political goodwill and possible retaliatory sanctions against Ecuadorean vessels. The fact they haven't tried it probably says most about the lack of real value they assign to Assange. This is exactly why Putin didn't simply put Snowden on a Russian plane to Ecuador - his presence in the NewSSR has value in how it annoys the West, but not enough value that Putin would risk the fallout from directly helping Snowden escape.

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