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JOURNALISM IN THE AMERICAS Blog

WikiLeaks suspends publishing leaked documents after funds dry up



WikiLeaks has announced it is suspending publishing any more leaked documents until it can raise more money, according to the Associated Press.

WikiLeaks needs about $3.5 million over the next year to continue operating, Reuters said.

On its website, WikiLeaks refers to a "banking blockade" that "has cost the organization tens of millions of pounds in lost donations." The whistleblower site contends, "If this financial attack stands unchallenged, a dangerous, oppressive and undemocratic precedent will have been set...If publishing the truth about war is enough to warrant such aggressive action by Washington insiders, all newspapers that have published WikiLeaks’ materials are on the verge of having their readers and advertisers blocked from paying for their subscriptions."

According to the news agency AFP, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said, "If WikiLeaks does not find a way to remove this blockade we will simply not be able to continue by the turn of the new year. If we don't knock down the blockade we simply will not be able to continue."

In December 2010, Visa, Mastercard and Paypal cut off funding for WikiLeaks, the Guardian explained, adding: "The banking blockade against WikiLeaks is one of the most sinister developments in recent years, and perhaps the most extreme example in a western democracy of extrajudicial actions aimed at stifling free speech – made all the worse by the public support of numerous people sitting in the US House of Representatives."

Despite the lack of funding, WikiLeaks will re-open its confidential submission system to received leaked documents -- offline since the summer of 2010 -- beginning Nov. 28, according to The Age.

Despite claiming to have secret documents regarding the banking industry, WikiLeaks has not released any files since publishing the secret Guantanamo Bay documents in April. Meanwhile, the U.S. government continues to build an espionage case against WikiLeaks, which also has released secret diplomatic cables and confidential documents related to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.



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