Assange: 'Ecuadorian embassy staff are like my family'

Wikileaker fills time hanging with celebs ... and hoping rape allegations will 'disappear'


Julian Assange has said that the folks at the Ecuadorian embassy in London he currently calls home are like a family to him and he gets lots of visits from very silly people celebrity supporters.

You know the old saying: you can choose your friends but clearly you can't choose which types your embassy will offer safe harbour to during sticky times.

In a Skype interview with The Telegraph, the chief Wikileaker said he's become bosom buddies with some of the embassy's staffers: "We’ve gone through a lot together and we understand we are all in this together."

Assange has lived in a small office in the Ecuadorian diplomatic bureau for over a year following the UK court's decision to extradite him to Sweden to face accusations of sexual molestation.

"Some staff have been here nearly 20 years," said Assange. "We have lunch together, celebrate people’s birthdays and other details I don’t want to go into because of the security situation. Of course, the working environment has changed a lot because there are still police surrounding the embassy and it’s a difficult situation for the staff.”

He also talked about how he's had visits from celebrities like Yoko Ono, actors Peter Sarsgaard and John Cusack and rapper MIA.

“There’s been a wide range,” he said. “It’s interesting to go through this experience and see who walks the walk and who just talks the talk."

Assange said that his bachelor pad room was converted from an office, with a bed, phone, sun lamp, computer, shower, treadmill and kitchenette. When he wants to chill out, he watches Aussie TV series Rake or movies like Argo and Zero Dark Thirty.

He said that while it wasn't easy to live in an embassy for 500 days, he wasn't going to let that interfere with his work.

"It’s a bit counter-productive to trap me here, because what else can I do but work?" he asked.

He also reiterated that he wasn't concerned about the rape allegations filed against him in Sweden that trapped him in Ecuador's London embassy, in which he was sought for questioning, but was only worried about becoming involved in any US case against Wikileaks.

"My focus of attention is on the US case – the continuing grand jury investigation. That is what I have received full political asylum in relation to. I assume the Swedish case will disappear of its own accord in due course," he said. ®


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