Swedish authorities may be allowed to question WikiLeaks founder

After more than three years inside the Ecuadorian embassy, authorities will likely allow Swedish police to question Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder accused of sexually assaulting two women in 2010.

Ecuador and Sweden signed an agreement this week after more than a year of negotiations, Reuters said.

Assange, a 44-year-old Australian, has been allowed to stay in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012 to stymie British authorities from extraditing him to Sweden, where he is alleged to have committed the crimes.

Assange, who said he is innocent of the charges, is also concerned that the United States will seek his extradition for leaking classified military documents and diplomatic correspondence in 2010. The leaks have been called one of the most significant national security breaches in U.S. history, according to Reuters.

“This is essentially a deal on legal assistance on a criminal matter, and when it is finalized later this week it will open the door for the Swedish state prosecutor to question Mr Assange,” Cecilia Riddselius, a Swedish Justice Ministry official, told the AFP on Sunday.

“It is without doubt an instrument that strengthens bilateral relations and will facilitate, for example, the fulfillment of judicial matters such as the questioning of Mr Assange.”

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