(Newsroom America) -- Wikileaks founder Julian Assange told about 1,000 supporters who had gathered outside the Ecuador Embassy where he has sought asylum that the U.S. "war on whistleblowers" must end as he praised his hosts for taking a stand and taking him in.
Assange, 41, made his first public appearance in two months. He is currently seeking to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted by authorities for questioning regarding sexual misconduct charges.
London media sources reported that about 100 police officers were also on hand for Assange's comments. The Australian knows he is subject to arrest if he steps one foot outside the Ecuadorean embassy, reports said.
"As WikiLeaks stands under threat so does the freedom of expression and the health of all our democracies," he said.
"We must use this moment to articulate the choice before the government of the U.S. Will it revert to the values it was founded on or will it launch off the precipice dragging us all into a dark, repressive world in which journalists live under fear of prosecution," Assange continued, before directing his comments towards the U.S.
"I say it must turn back. I ask President Obama to do the right thing. The U.S. must renounce its witch hunt against WikiLeaks. It must dissolve its FBI investigation and it must vow that it will not seek to prosecute our staff or our supporters," he said.
"The U.S. must pledge that it will not pursue journalists for shining a light on the powerful. There must be no more foolish talk about prosecuting any news organsations. The U.S. administration's war on whistleblowers must end."
He also praised the "courage" of the South American nation of Ecuador for giving him refuge.
On Saturday, the Ecuadorean president warned Britain that any attempt to storm its embassy to retrieve and arrest Assange would destroy relations between the two countries.
In his weekly address, Rafael Correa issued his strongest warning yet to Britain, saying its position against Assange is "grotesque" and "intolerant."
"The United Kingdom threat would be breaking the law and encroaching on our embassy. I don’t know who they think I am or what they think our government is. But how could they expect us to yield to their threats or cower before them? My friends, they don’t know who they are dealing with," he said in comments likely to play well on the streets of Ecuadorean cities, analysts said.
© 2012 Newsroom America.