Aug. 17 - Supporters of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange are invited into New York's Ecuadorian consulate after the government granted him asylum. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
(ROUGH CUT ONLY - NO REPORTER NARRATION) New Yorkers in support of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange came out on Thursday (August 16) to show their appreciation for the Ecuadorian government. Ecuador granted political asylum to Assange earlier in the day after it said Britain had threatened to raid the Ecuadorian embassy in London to arrest the former hacker. A dozen supporters carrying signs and flowers lined up outside the Ecuadorian consulate in New York. SOUNDBITE: NANCY VANNESS, ASSANGE SUPPORTER, SAYING (English): "I appreciate the work that has been done by WIkiLeaks and Julian Assange has certainly been WikiLeaks. So I am grateful for that. I don't know anything about him personally and I just think he deserves protection as a journalist that he's never been offered." Later the group were invited into the consulate, where they gave officials flowers. Jorge Lopez, consul of Ecuador in New York, said they were invited into the building as the consul wanted to express their thanks. Assange has been holed up inside Ecuador's embassy in central London for eight weeks since he lost a legal battle to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for accusations of rape and sexual assault.