The 2016 Democratic presidential nominee and former secretary of state weighed in on Assange while at a speaking event with her husband, former President Bill Clinton. Assange was arrested earlier Thursday at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, and the U.S. has charged him with conspiring with former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning to break into a classified government computer at the Pentagon.
WikiLeaks‘ publication of Democratic emails stolen by Russian intelligence officers during the 2016 election season hurt Clinton’s presidential campaign. Donald Trump, Clinton’s Republican opponent, frequently showered praise on Assange during the final weeks of the campaign and cheered on the release of damaging emails from Clinton’s campaign manager, John Podesta.
Assange was arrested after Ecuador revoked the political asylum that had kept him holed up at the embassy for nearly seven years. The U.S. is seeking Assange’s extradition.
Clinton said Thursday, “The bottom line is that he has to answer for what he has done, at least as it has been charged.”
In a tongue-in-cheek nod to Trump’s travel ban on citizens from Muslim-majority nations, Clinton added, “I do think it’s a little ironic that he’s the only foreigner this administration would welcome to the United States.”