Ecuador confirms it cut off Assange's internet over Clinton emails

Ecuador confirms it cut off Assange's internet over Clinton emails
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The Ecuadorian government confirmed Tuesday that it cut off WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s internet connection because of his anti-secrecy platform’s publication of emails allegedly stolen from Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHouse Intel Republican: 'Foolish' not to take info on opponent from foreign ally House Intel Republican: 'Foolish' not to take info on opponent from foreign ally It's about the delegates, stupid MORE campaign chairman John Podesta.

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“The Government of Ecuador respects the principle of non-intervention in the internal affairs of other states. It does not interfere in external electoral processes, nor does it favor any particular candidate,” Ecuador said in a statement.

“Accordingly, Ecuador has exercised its sovereign right to temporarily restrict access to some of its private communications network within its Embassy in the United Kingdom.”

The emails are believed to have been stolen by the Russian government, and their release has been widely seen as a deliberate attempt to meddle in the U.S. election — although some Republicans have lauded their publication.

GOP presidential nominee Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump defends Stephanopolous interview Trump defends Stephanopolous interview Buttigieg on offers of foreign intel: 'Just call the FBI' MORE has repeatedly invoked the content of the emails on the stump as evidence that the Democratic nominee is not fit to serve. Assange has also been explicit in his belief that Clinton should not become president.

The Clinton campaign has refused to confirm the authenticity of the emails.

Despite Tuesday's development, Ecuador will continue to provide asylum to Assange, according to the statement.

The Australian activist has been living in the embassy in London since 2012. He is avoiding a rape charge in Sweden that he claims is political and will lead to his extradition to the U.S. over previous leaks, including those from former Army Pvt. Chelsea Manning.

Assange's internet was disconnected on Saturday, according to WikiLeaks. The organization has continued to publish daily batches of emails from Podesta's account. 

"This temporary restriction does not prevent the WikiLeaks organization from carrying out its journalistic activities," the Ecuadorian government said.