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Ecuador removes Julian Assange's extra security

IANS  |  Quito 

has announced an immediate withdrawal of additional security forces at its embassy in where founder is living, following claims that $5 million was spent to protect him.

In a statement on Thursday, the (Secom) said ordered additional security teams of the embassy to be "withdrawn immediately", the reported.

The money was used to monitor Assange's visitors, embassy staff and UK police, according to reports.

Assange has been at the Ecuadorian embassy in since 2012 after being granted asylum.

He fled there to avoid extradition to over sex crime allegations, which he denies. The Swedish authorities have since dropped their investigation, but Britain is still seeking his arrest for breaching bail conditions.

Assange, 46, believes he will be extradited to the US for questioning over the activities of if he leaves the building.

He set up Wikileaks, which publishes confidential documents and images, in 2006 -- making headlines around the world in April 2010 when it released footage showing US soldiers shooting dead 18 civilians from a helicopter in

According to Secom, will now carry out normal security procedures "similar to the rest of Ecuadorian embassies in the world".

The measure was announced after daily on Tuesday published an article saying that the Ecuadorian had spent at least $5 million on a "operation" to "protect" Assange.

In March, cut Assange's at the London embassy, preventing him from "interfering in other countries' affairs".

It came after Assange had questioned accusations that was responsible for the poisoning of a Russian ex-and his daughter in the UK on March 4.

In May, 2017, Moreno asked Assange to refrain from expressing his public support for the independence campaign in Spain's Catalonia region after he tweeted that was guilty of "repression".

Assange's account is now being run by his legal campaign.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, May 18 2018. 20:22 IST