Commenting on the decision by the Metropolitan police to remove the police presence dedicated to apprehending Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy, Labour London Assembly Member Murad Qureshi AM said:
“Since Julian Assange entered the Ecuadorian Embassy in 2012 taxpayers have had to fork out over £12m policing him. Of course we should do everything possible to apprehend Julian Assange so he can face a fair trial but there’s no way spending such vast amounts of money could be justified indefinitely.
“We needed to see diplomatic efforts to resolve this situation, encouraging Swedish prosecutors to travel to the embassy to interview Assange, or even contribute to the costs the Metropolitan Police have incurred.
“With neighbourhood policing being decimated by cuts, and violent crime once again on the rise in the capital, we need to see this money spent on protecting Londoners not police officers providing window dressing for the Ecuadorian Embassy.”