Galloway's rape comments condemned
George Galloway has come under fire after describing Julian Assange’s alleged sexual assault on two women in Sweden as “bad sexual etiquette”.
The Respect MP argued the allegations are driven by Mr Assange’s role as founder of the Wikileaks website, and that his actions did not constitute “rape or you bankrupt the term rape of all meaning”.
He said in a podcast: “If the allegations made by these two women were true, 100 per cent true, and even if a camera in the room captured them, they don't constitute rape. At least not rape as anyone with any sense can possibly recognise it. And somebody has to say this."
Mr Assange remains holed up in the Ecuadorean embassy in London after being granted asylum by the country. However Downing Street today confirmed it would not grant the Wikileaks founder safe passage out of the country.
A spokesman said the Government was "obliged" to extradite the Wikileaks founder to Sweden to face questioning over the sex assault claims, which he denies, and pledged to seek a diplomatic solution to the dispute.
"Under our law, having exhausted all the options of appeal, we are obliged to extradite him to Sweden. It is our intention to carry out that obligation.
"We will continue talking to the Ecuadorean government and others to try to find a diplomatic solution."
Latin American leaders last night joined forces to support Ecuador's decision to grant Mr Assange political asylum.
They heavily criticised the UK's threat to lift the diplomatic status of the Ecuadorian embassy in order to arrest Mr Assange, who breached his bail conditions this year.
The Union of South American Nations agreed a document which said it backed the country "in the face of threats" from the UK.