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Ecuador asks UK to help investigate spying at its embassy in London

Friday, July 5th 2013 - 07:07 UTC
Full article 48 comments

Ecuador has asked the UK to help an investigation over alleged spying at its embassy in London where Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is living. Ecuador named a British company it claimed planted a listening device in their ambassador's office but this was denied. Read full article


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  • Faz

    Perhaps Assange planted the bug so he can leak their secrets?

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 07:13 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Redrow

    Yes very true!!
    The biter bit.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 07:24 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Britworker

    If they are that concerned, they could simply close their Embassy and move to different premises, or preferably piss off home. I can't see the foreign office being too receptive to this request whilst they are harbouring a rapist.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 08:14 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • LEPRecon

    Ecuador's security must be worried:

    1. Either this 'bug' has been there for months (years?) and they've never spotted it before - so their security is crap...


    2. Someone has planted it recently, which would seem to indicate either an Ecuadorian OR Assange OR one of the numerous 'visitors' he has had.

    It is also strange at the 'timing' of all this. They aren't fooling anyone, but at least they seem to have learned some diplomacy by not immediately blaming the 'British'.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 08:14 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Usurping Pirate

    Title should read : Ecuador asks UK to help investigate spying at its cramped studio flat in London

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 08:45 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • coldo

    It is very worrying that an official embassy could be bugged like this. That said however, this all seems a bit Hollywood.

    Also, to single out s specific company as being guilty would suggest they have some sort of proof also. So why not share it?

    I’m also convinced that the UK government will have far more sophisticated technology for snooping should they have a need to do this than a device which is attached to the inside of a power outlet and requires a sim car to be used.

    So where does this leave us…. Well the conspiracy theorists will unbeatably come up with a number of possible outcomes…

    1. The USA through the UK bugged the embassy in an attempt to glean world secretes from the world powers embassy
    2. Julia did this for more Wiki leaks and the whole episode is all about his attaining top secretes from this new governmental target
    3. The Ecuadorian government have had enough of Julian being a squatter on their digs and this is a ruse to try and force the UK to allow passage out of the country for him.
    4. Another south American Government are actually responsible for the bugging.

    I look forward to William Hague’s response to this matter. He is a very smart man and I am sure he will nip this one firmly in the bud by giving the facts and not the fiction what we can all expect from other countries.

    Interestingly there has not been a coming together of all South American Countries yet to condemn the actions of the “bugger” and to show their untied approach to having a nice old “Jolly” into each other’s countries. After all what world leader wouldn’t want an all-expenses paid day out were they bash the imperialist bullies of the world and pat each other on the back saying how great they all are!

    Please note this post was written with much sarcasm and intended humour… just in case you missed it…

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 08:49 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Pirate Love

    maybe Ecuador should be investigating themselves, the embassy will be as tight as a drum since assmanges occupation and any violation would have been self created, after all this is a latam country and truth and transparency isn't the latam way now is it?
    just another way for assmange to get back into the headlines after a dull period, and shows Ecuador are now desperate....all I ask is wheres the PROOF!

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 09:04 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • JoseAngeldeMonterrey

    Correa, Evo and Maduro, the perfect Latinamerican idiots. Pantomimes, clowns, all to be in the patriotic headlines of their officially controlled media, all demagoguery and populism while their economies continue their downfall.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 09:28 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Britworker

    Hehe, it must be hysterical in that Ecuadorian flat. You can just imagine them trying to entertain visiting dignitaries when Assange comes walking out of the shower with a towel wrapped around him, picking his underpants up off the chair before they can sit down, then telling them to wait a while before they use the bathroom cos he had a curry last night.
    Sooner or later every guest outstays their welcome Mr Assange, be warned!

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 09:31 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    #1 agreed....assange could hardly stand the lack of attention with snowden in the limelight.!!

    #6 are you serious? Do you have any clue how many listening devises are pulled out of US embassies on a regular basis? Throughout the world US embassies are swept weekly, only we don;t have a leaker telling the world bugs have been found.

    Lep I agree that the timing is quite strange and convenient.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 09:52 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Be serious

    To do a proper investigation the UK Government has advised that the Embassy must be totally vacated so that sensitive equipment can be installed to identify location of any more bugging devices. If Mr Assange could also just wait in the corridor by the stairwell that should suffice.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 10:02 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Idlehands

    I would lay a bet that the Ecuadorians planted the device themselves. It doesn't sound anywhere near covert enough to be SIS. Any monkey could find that thing in a switch.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 11:43 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Trunce!

    Hardly 007 Q gadget ; )

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 12:13 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • agent999

    You would have thought that all embassies did a regular sweep of their offices for any surveillance devices.

    The scanner are readily available and not expensive.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 12:16 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GFace

    @10 Poppy, remember the US embassy under construction in the former USSR capital? Whatever became of it? Meanwhile.. shucks.. someone planted a bug in the consulate. I'm shocked that spying is going on in an embassy. Rather like gambling in a casino.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 01:00 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    yes.....that had bugs in everything from pipes, to the wiring and sheetrock. We tore that building down. And it still happens to this day, we pick up bugs all the time becasue we have to hire locals........Remember the Russian agents we caught two years ago in Jersery living under assumed alias as that TV show “The Americans”. That hot Russian spy Anna proposed to snowden this weekend on
    I still think it was assange or equador in an attempt to keep up the pressure on the USA.
    Meanwhile, back at the ranch......the group of 4 BEAVer's as one so eloquently referred to them, jerk one another off and come uo with a powerful statement to blast soveriegn nations for being, well.......sovereign.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 01:31 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • screenname

    I wonder if the company that they claim bugged them will sue?

    I suppose in a way it is good publicity for them, even if they really don't carry out that type of surveillance.

    A difficult dilemma for a spying company: demonstrate ethical working standards and sue, or insinuate you are willing to be unethical – which may lead to more work.

    Whatever the truth behind this, I can see Ecuador being pursued through the courts for their outburst.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 01:48 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ChrisR

    I think this is just priceless: asking the UK for help in anti-bugging.

    If the security services are doing their job correctly I bet they have the person setting the bug on video.

    What's the betting it is Julie himself?

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 01:59 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ElaineB

    @9 Visitors and fish. They stink after three days.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 02:03 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    Bingo've got

    I agree that it is someone from

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 02:04 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • RICO

    This is scandalous, you can never find a policeman when you need one, all the potential witnesses should come to the local cop shop to be interviewed.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 02:20 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Be serious

    Just been announced that its Assange's electric shaver adapter. He's certainly made himself at home.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 02:33 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • reality check


    How do you covertly unscrew and replace a power outlet?

    ”look there's Elvis, (places bug whilst heads are turned away) whoops sorry, my mistake!”

    Unless of course it was placed before they moved in. In that case, where are the bloody rest of them?

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 02:47 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GFace

    @18. It's his revenge for them tampering with the “somebody-else's lunch” they left in the fridge for him to steal.

    If you know what I mean.

    And I think you do.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 03:04 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Trunce!

    Following the Police invstigation - Mr Patiño said.

    “What a lovely decorative rock in the corner of the room.”

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 03:19 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • darragh

    Let me get this straight - they find an obsolete bug, that can be bought off the shelf, in an electric socket in the Ambassador's bedsit and somehow they know the name of the company that planted it!! - how? did it have a number to call in case of problems or a web address??. What surveillance company would leave info in a bug that would allow them to be traced -

    I think someone is pulling their legs.

    Next they'll be finding a plastic dog turd under the table!!

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 03:51 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • reality check

    My guess is it originated from Assanges Joe 90 kit, the one they gave him at Christmas.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 04:00 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • GFace

    @26, “ did it have a number to call in case of problems or a web address??” probably some Asian call center. That would be just priceless.

    @25, I was thinking more like the Fist Full of Yen sequence in Kentucky Fried Movie where kidnapped nuclear scientist discreetly shows the hero all the bugs in his room escalating from the traditional hidden bug, through to bopping their heads on the old style radio show boom mike and ending with the stenographer sitting in the corner.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 04:00 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • screenname

    ooops, typo @17

    ...Whatever the truth behind this, I CANNOT see Ecuador being pursued through the courts for their outburst.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 05:16 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Conqueror

    Let's look at this intelligently. You can attach a “bug” to a window pane so that the “bug” relays the vibrations of the “window” caused by noises within the room. So why “conceal” a microphone in an electrical socket? In addition, lasers can be used to pick up sounds within a room without any “on-site” equipment. Poor Ecuador is still in the early 20th century. In a couple of hundred years it might get into the 21st century. And will still be four hundred years behind. Here's a tip. Get rid of Morales. He still visits the witch-doctor!

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 06:07 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • reality check

    It's a blatant case of voyeurism!

    Now who do we know living in the building, that has allegations of a similar nature made against him?

    Any ideas?

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 06:15 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Briton

    should this not have been dealt with in the UK,
    how did he get it over in ecuqador,
    how do we know that they did not plant it, just to blame us,

    with all the big powerfull nations in the world, with all the trouble spots,
    why would anyone want to bug a 4th world country..

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 06:45 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ElaineB

    @30 I have to agree with you. With modern surveillance equipment, they don't need to use ancient bugs.

    There is a spy shop in Chelsea - sadly not selling spies - where you can buy such stuff. Gimmick gifts for the man with everything and another bloody birthday coming up.

    It is amusing watching Assange and Snowdon, two famewhores, fighting to get the most attention.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 09:34 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Vestige

    Americas poodle.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 10:03 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • reality check

    Assange? Totally agree.

    Jul 05th, 2013 - 10:09 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Rufus

    @26 Darragh, if it's of that obsolete a design that it's available commercially then it's quite feasible that it does have the manufacturers name on the inside somewhere.

    What's funny is that if it was done by any government then I would imagine they would have taken the makers name off, to make tracking it back more difficult. If it's not a government doing it then who (in or around the Ecuadorian embassy) does that leave?

    Jul 06th, 2013 - 12:51 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • A_Voice

    I thought that this bug works like a mobile phone with a sim a mobile phone maybe info was left on the sim. As far as I understand you call it like a mobile and then listen. Maybe they were able to see the area where the calls originated.

    Jul 06th, 2013 - 09:29 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    sim card.......that's spying on cheating spouses shit. They don't have to plant shit in a room anymore. Where do you come from.....south america? This is 2013 not 1990

    Jul 07th, 2013 - 04:35 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • A_Voice

    Did you actually read the article?
    “The system worked with a Sim card and could be activated by a call from any mobile or fixed-line phone, he added.”
    Thought not........typical Yank never read the instructions.........
    That's why they always have problems with IKEA furniture and that's why IKEA instead give them pictures to follow........Ugh....don't understand this it's not in American!

    Jul 07th, 2013 - 12:27 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ChrisR

    38 Captain Poppy

    Don't you just love it when the ignorant argie(s) think IKEA and any other international company use illustrations to assemble / use their product is because their customers cannot read or understand their own language?

    I can understand an argie thinking this about the lazy uneducated 12 – 15 million Peronistas that infect The Dark Country, but they probably cannot understand the illustrations either. Hang on: they will never HAVE anything of any value that will need illustrations!

    So argie, it’s to reduce the number of languages that would otherwise be needed to achieve the desired result.

    So glad to be of help to such unintelligent, poorly educated people.

    Jul 07th, 2013 - 12:55 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • A_Voice

    Someone that obviously has never been to an IKEA store......this about sums it up....

    Jul 07th, 2013 - 02:40 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    A voice/think why post with one ID when you can be twice as stupid with two ID's
    That is simplistic shit that actual field officers do not use, but than again, we are talking a SA country here.

    Do you trolls have no dignity?

    Again, modern intelligence do not need to plant anything inside a building anymore. If they wanted something inside they can put something on the stamp of junk mail everyday, they do not need a cell

    Jul 07th, 2013 - 04:01 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • reality check

    One thing is most certainly apparent. Had the Ecuadorians the slightest evidence that this device originated from British intelligence, bearing in mind the current international atmosphere on spying, they would be all over this like a rash!

    Suggest to me, that their people are telling them that it is so 2nd, 3rd or even 4th generation technology, it would not have originated from MI5 or MI6 or whoever in British Inteligence.

    Maybe the Met planted it, be right up their street!

    Jul 07th, 2013 - 04:19 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ChrisR

    43 reality check

    No, if the Met planted it don't you think it would have a “Property of the London Metropolitan Police” sticker on it?


    Jul 07th, 2013 - 05:21 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • reality check

    True and the ten guys planting it would have been caught!

    Jul 07th, 2013 - 07:08 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ChrisR

    45 reality check

    We could go on forever about this!


    Jul 07th, 2013 - 09:12 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • screenname

    I would love the thing to have some maplins ID on it that links it to the credit card of the bloke in the article photo.

    Do they have credit cards, or do they just pay for everything in bananas?

    Jul 08th, 2013 - 03:39 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    Perhaps the Ecuadoran's (sic) believe in their simplistic minds that they can capitalize on the snowden scenario. Assuming the Brit's are pissed at us Yanks for spying on them, if they produce a bug, they ask for help from the Brits, it's gets them talking against us Yanks, then about assange....then, then,then.........assange is free to get out of their

    Jul 08th, 2013 - 09:43 am - Link - Report abuse 0

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