WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange entered Ecuador’s embassy in London on Tuesday, seeking political asylum in the country.
“As a signatory to the United Nations Universal Declaration for Human Rights, with an obligation to review all applications for asylum, we have immediately passed his application on to the relevant department in Quito,” the Ecuadorean embassy has said in a statement.
“While the department assesses Mr Assange’s application, Mr Assange will remain at the embassy, under the protection of the Ecuadorean government.”
The South American country is “studying and analysing the request,” Ecuador’s Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino has told reporters.
On June 14, Assange lost his last appeal that aimed at blocking his extradition to Sweden to face “sex offence” charges.
The 40-year-old Australian is accused of raping one woman and “sexually molesting and coercing” another in Stockholm in August 2010, but he claims the allegations against him are politically motivated.
Assange’s Wikileaks website published material from leaked diplomatic cables embarrassing several governments.