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Assange pledges to remain in embassy

JULIAN Assange believes there is a "significant risk" of being extradited to the United States if he leaves the Ecuador embassy in London, he has said.

Speaking inside the embassy on the second anniversary of his dramatic arrival, the WikiLeaks founder made it clear he will remain inside the building until the impasse over his future is broken.

He is wanted for questioning in Sweden over sex allegations by two women but fears being sent to the US if he leaves London.

He told a handful of journalists that threats had been made against his children and his mother since he has been living in the embassy.

A group of supporters held a vigil outside the embassy to mark the anniversary. Mr Assange claimed the bill for mounting a round-the-clock police guard was £6.5 million.

He said the work of WikiLeaks was continuing, even though he can not leave the building, adding that money was still being donated to the whistleblowing website despite a banking blockade.

He spoke by video link to Ecuador's foreign minister Ricardo Patino in Quito, who assured him that Ecuador would continue to "protect" him after it granted Mr Assange ongoing political asylum.

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