Costs for Assange 'round-the-clock police guard' at Ecuadorian embassy nears GBP3m
London, Feb 16 : The cost of policing the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been staying for has reached 2.9 million pounds, it has emerged.
Metropolitan Police officers have been stationed outside the embassy in Knightsbridge around the clock since last June.
The Met said that the estimated total cost of policing the Ecuadorian embassy between last June and the end of January is 2.9 million pounds, of which 2.3 million pounds is opportunity costs, police officer pay costs that would be incurred in normal duties, and 0.6 million pounds in overtime, the Independent reports.
A spokesman at the Ecuadorian embassy said that the 'Ecuadorian government is concerned by the significant cost to the taxpayers of London of policing the embassy at the present time.'
However, this expenditure could be avoided if the UK Government would provide the undertakings that the Ecuadorian government has sort that there will be no onward extradition of Assange to the US, he added.
Assange, who is fighting extradition to Sweden on sex charges, amid fears he will be sent to the United States, has been granted political asylum by Ecuador.