Ecuador President Rafael Correa granted Assange asylum in 2012. The only time things have looked prickly for Assange since then was during the release of emails from the US Democratic National Committee ahead of last year's presidential elections, when Assange's Internet access was cut by the embassy which took a dim view of what it said was interference in another country's elections.
Eight candidates are in the running in Ecuador and two — Guillermo Lasso of Creating Opportunities and Cynthia Viteri of the Social Christian Party — have said they will ask Assange to leave the embassy, according to The New York Times.
Current polling in Quito indicates that Correa's preferred successor, Lenín Moreno of the ruling PAIS Alliance, will win, but only after a second-round runoff. This means Assange's fate is likely to be known only by April.
"As president of this nation, I need the money used for his upkeep, for example to pay for my children's school lunches," she said. "I withdraw his asylum for the purchase, in my opinion, of Assange's silence."
Here's Ecuador's opposition leader (elections Sunday) saying he'll revoke my asylum after I revealed CIA penetration of the French election. pic.twitter.com/UOQVircHF6— Julian Assange (@JulianAssange) 17 February 2017
Lasso told The Guardian that, "the Ecuadorian people have been paying a cost that we should not have to bear. We will cordially ask Señor Assange to leave within 30 days of assuming a mandate".
The Assange saga began in August 2010 when he visited Sweden to address a conference. During that visit, he had sexual relations with two women who later filed rape and molestation complaints against him, claims that he has denied.
Assange was subjected to questioning by Swedish authorities and cleared of all accusations at the time. He could have left the country but stayed a while, in case authorities wanted to speak to him again.
Interpol issued a Red Notice for his arrest on 20 November 2010 by which time he was back in London. He went there because he did not trust the government in his home country, Australia.
Given its close ties with the US, Assange feared that Canberra would hand him over to Washington.
On 27 November, Assange surrendered to authorities and appeared before a Westminster judge. He was granted bail in December and supporters provided £240,000 in cash and sureties towards this end.
Lawyers from Sweden and Assange's side, among them the world-renowned Australian Geoffrey Robertson, wrangled over the issue until June 2012, when Swedish prosecutors asked the UK to extradite him.
Assange's lawyers fought the demand on the grounds that if he was sent to Sweden, then the US would seek to have him extradited for questioning.
On 19 June 2012, he jumped bail and entered the Ecuadorian embassy in London, seeking asylum. British police have since then blocked him from leaving.
After the recent pardon extended to whistleblower Chelsea Manning by outgoing US President Barack Obama, Assange indicated that he would honour an earlier statement that he would accept being extradited to the US if Manning was freed. Manning provided many documents and one shocking video about Iraq war atrocities to WikiLeaks.