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Leak of classified US diplomatic cables perfectly legal: WikiLeaks

December 2, 2010 - London

The release of a trove of classified US diplomatic cables by WikiLeaks is perfectly legal, a spokesperson for the whistleblower website has said.

WikiLeaks has shaken the diplomatic world by publishing excerpts of over 250,000 confidential cables in partnership with five newspapers.

Kristinn Hrafnsson said that people had a right to know what officials working on their behalf were doing and dismissed concern that the leaked documents would damage relation between countries.

"If global stability is based on deception and lies, maybe it needs a bit of a shaking up," the News quoted Hrafnsson, as saying.

"I think in general that all communications should be public as possible. There may be some justification for secrecy, but in general we are talking about officials who are working on behalf of the people, and the people have the right to know."

"I think it is perfectly legal. We haven't heard any justification or reference to an illegal code that we are supposed to have broken, so we don't think we have broken any law," he added.

Earlier, in October, WikiLeaks had released a package of almost 400,000 documents called the Iraq War Logs in coordination with major commercial media organizations.

In July, WikiLeaks released Afghan War Diary, a compilation of more than 76,900 documents about the War in Afghanistan not previously available for public review.

In April, the group had posted video from a 2007 incident in which Iraqi civilians were killed by U.S. forces, on a website called Collateral Murder.


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