Ecuador Suspects UK Embassy Housing Assange Was Bugged

Ecuador has found what it says was a hidden microphone in its London embassy, which houses Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. The nation plans Wednesday to announce who it believes controlled the device, according to Reuters

Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino said the device was discovered in the office of the Ecuadorean ambassador to the United Kingdom, Ana Alban, during one of Patino’s meetings with Assange on June 16.

“I didn’t denounce this at the time because we didn’t want the theme of our visit to London to be confused with this matter,” Patino said in a news conference Tuesday in Quito, the capital of Ecuador, as quoted by Reuters. The foreign minister had met at the time with British Foreign Secretary William Hague to discuss Assange.

“Furthermore, we first wanted to ascertain with precision what could be the origin of this interception device in the office of our ambassador,” Patino added. “We are sorry to say so, but this is another instance of a loss of ethics at the international level in relations between governments.”

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Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at catherine@talkingpointsmemo.com.

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