US contacts allies about WikiLeaks move

The United States has briefed its key allies, including Britain, France, Germany and Saudi Arabia ahead of the mass release of classified documents by WikiLeaks.

Whistleblower website WikiLeaks plans to release around three million leaked documents, including cables sent to Washington from American embassies throughout the world.

The website had previously posted online secret details of US military operations in war-ravaged Iraq and Afghanistan.

United States Department of State Spokesman Philip Crowley says the United States is “gearing up for the worst-case scenario.”

“Across the State Department, senior officials are reaching out to countries and warning them about a possible release of documents,” AFP quoted Crowley as saying.

“We are all bracing for what may be coming and condemn WikiLeaks for the release of classified material,” he said. “It will place lives and interests at risk. It is irresponsible.”

Several countries, including Israel, have been warned of potential embarrassment from the release.

Crowley says US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also phoned the senior officials of Germany, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Britain, France and Afghanistan regarding WikiLeaks.

The cables are said to date from the past five years and include media reports, talks with politicians, officials and journalists, as well as evaluations and various analyses by American diplomats regarding their host countries.

According to reports, the next release, due to take place in the next few days, is also expected to include thousands of classified cables reporting corruption allegations against politicians in Russia, Afghanistan and other Central Asian nations.

WikiLeaks has not confirmed exactly when the documents will be made public, but it said the release will be nearly seven times larger than the 400,000 documents on the Iraq war it published in October.

“The coming months will see a new world, where global history is redefined,” the organization said via Twitter.


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