Assange claims US erecting a regime of secrecy and obfuscation

Assange gave a statement via videoconference to a forum at the UN sponsored by Ecuador

The U.S. is trying to erect a national regime of secrecy and obfuscation where any government employee revealing sensitive information to a media organization can be sentenced to death, life imprisonment, or for espionage, and the journalists from a media organization with them, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange told a U.N. forum through a video link from the Ecuador embassy in London on Wednesday.

U.S. Army Private First Class Bradley E. Manning, who was arrested in 2010 for allegedly passing classified documents to WikiLeaks, was charged with a death penalty offence as the U.S. tried "to break him" into testifying against Assange and WikiLeaks, Assange said.

In June, Assange sought protection and requested political asylum from the Ecuador government, to avoid extradition to Sweden for questioning in connection with alleged sexual misconduct. He was granted asylum last month.

The forum, focused on diplomatic asylum, was organized by Ecuador's permanent mission at the U.N., and was led by Ecuador's foreign minister Ricardo Patiño.

Assange also criticized what he described as U.S. attempts to take credit for pro-democracy movements in the Middle East, popularly referred to as the Arab Spring, and claimed WikiLeaks played a role in exposing the U.S. role.

Tunisian protester Tarek al-Tayeb Mohamed Bouazizi did not set himself on fire so that Barack Obama could be reelected, Assange said. "The world knew, after reading WikiLeaks publications, that the Ben Ali regime and its government had for long years enjoyed the indifference, if not the support, of the United States - in full knowledge of its excesses and its crimes," he added.

"It must come as a surprise to the Egyptian teenagers who washed American teargas out of their eyes that the US administration supported change in Egypt," said Assange who accused U.S president Barack Obama of trying to exploit the reforms of the Arab Spring for his re-election campaign in footage of the speech provided by Russian news channel RT.

WikiLeaks has published leaked diplomatic cables and other information that embarrassed several governments and international businesses.

Assange could not travel to New York as he cannot step out of the embassy without being arrested by British police who surround the building. The U.K. has refused to grant him passage to Quito stating that the government is under obligation to comply with court rulings and send him to Stockholm. But Assange's supporters fear that from Sweden, he could be transferred to the U.S. to face charges under the country's Espionage Act.(

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?