Ecuador’s foreign minister Maria Fernanda Espinosa confirmed Assange’s citizenship request at a press conference in Quito.
She said she feared for threats to Assange’s life coming from third-party states.
The Ecuadorean government is seeking a “dignified and just” solution in the Assange case with the British government.
It comes after Britain refused a request by Ecuador for diplomatic status to be given to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, a spokesman for Britain’s Foreign Office said.
Assange has been holed up for more than five years in the Ecuadorean embassy in London where he was granted asylum in 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden over rape allegations.
The Ecuadorean foreign minister stated Assange would not leave the embassy without security guarantees.