WikiLeaks Faces Uncertain Future as Founder Remains in Ecuador's Embassy Seeking Asylum

By Ed Silverstein June 20, 2012

With WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange seeking refuge in Ecuador – the future of the controversial website may have never been more doubtful.

As of Wednesday, Assange was reportedly hiding out at Ecuador's embassy in London, and his actions could lead to his arrest for violating conditions of his bail, the BBC reports.

Assange had to be at his bail address between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m., but was at the embassy on Tuesday night, according to a report from the BBC.

A U.K. court last week also rejected his request to reopen an appeal against his extradition to Sweden, where he faces questioning on reported sexual assaults. Assange has denied any wrongdoing. On top of it, two former WikiLeaks volunteers claimed Assange assaulted them in Stockholm. Assange has pledged to fight any extradition to Sweden, according to TechZone360.

Rather than WikiLeaks focusing on his legal challenges, it has chosen to focus on the site’s immediate future.

“We are forced to put all our efforts into raising funds to ensure our economic survival,” the site declared on its homepage on Wednesday. “For almost a year we have been fighting an unlawful financial blockade. We cannot allow giant US finance companies to decide how the whole world votes with its pocket. Our battles are costly. We need your support to fight back. Please donate now.”

WikiLeaks did note that Assange has been detained for 561 days.

If Assange leaves for Ecuador the website’s future can't be very strong. Friends and supporters who put up $380,000 in bail money for Assange would surely lose it if he flees. The impact of that loss could affect fundraising efforts at WikiLeaks as well.

The website gained worldwide notoriety for publishing leaked, embarrassing documents about governments and businesses.

In the past, Assange claimed that money donated to WikiLeaks won't go for his legal defense in his personal cases. The founder may also try to take his case to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) later this month.




Edited by Braden Becker

TechZone360 Contributor

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