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U.S. Promised Ecuador That Julian Assange Won't be Executed: Reports

The year-long secret process which led to Julian Assange being removed from the Ecuadorian embassy in London and facing extradition to the U.S. involved a promise from the Trump administration that the Wikileaks founder won't face the death penalty, reports say. Negotiations began in March 2018 when Ecuador asked for written assurances that the U.K. wouldn't extradite Assange to a country where he could be executed, according to a report from ABC News. Six months later, Ecuadorian officials reached out to the U.S. through Trump's Ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, who then contacted the Justice Department. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein reportedly agreed to the request, which allowed Grenell to make the verbal promise to Ecuador and proceed with talks in Britain. However, the State Department refused to comment on the ABC News report, and the Justice Department wouldn't confirm that the U.S. agreed to take any sentence off the table.