Reply by the Embassy’s spokesperson to a media questionregarding the Guardian piece on Julian Assange

Question: How would you comment on today’s Guardian article claiming that “Russian diplomats held secret talks to assess whether they could help Julian Assange flee the UK”?

Answer: This publication has nothing to do with the reality. The Embassy has never engaged either with Ecuadorean colleagues, or with anyone else, in discussions on any kind of Russia’s participation in ending Mr Assange’s stay within the diplomatic mission of Ecuador. As regards the idea that “the Kremlin was willing to offer support” to a secret plan by “allowing Assange to travel to Russia”, we are puzzled by the sensational attitude of the authors. Russia is always happy to welcome international guests if they arrive in a lawful manner and with good intentions.

As recently as 18 September, the Culture Secretary, Jeremy Wright, speaking at the Royal Television Society, called for increased efforts to combat media and online disinformation. Today’s Guardian piece is a brilliant example of the kind of journalism that the British reader should be protected from.

By the way, contrary to British media standards, the authors had not asked us for a comment when preparing their article. Let us hope that the Guardian will correct the omission by publishing this reply.