WikiLeaks to release Iraq war files very soon: spokesman (Update)
Whistleblowing website WikiLeaks will not publish some 400,000 secret reports on the Iraq war on Monday as had been widely rumoured, but they would be available "very soon", a spokesman said.
"There are rumours that have been floating around for some time, there is nothing you can do about it, they're obviously not correct. I can confirm that there's nothing coming out today," Kristinn Hrafnsson, a close collaborator of founder Julian Assange, told AFP.
"I can say with certainty that WikiLeaks will publish something very soon. We don't comment on what we are working on and don't give any exact dates," he said.
Assange also refused to give an exact date for the publication of the documents.
"WikiLeaks does not speak about upcoming releases dates," he wrote in an online article, the authenticity of which was confirmed by Hrafnsson.
"Indeed, with very rare exceptions we do not communicate any specific information about upcoming releases, since that simply provides fodder for abusive organisations to get their spin machines ready," he said.
The Pentagon scoured through an Iraq war database Monday to prepare for potential fallout from an expected release by WikiLeaks of some 400,000 secret military reports.
The massive release is set to dwarf the whistleblower website's publication of 77,000 classified US military documents on the war in Afghanistan in July, including the names of Afghan informants and other details from raw intelligence reports.
Assange was on Monday denied a permit to live and work in Sweden, where he is being investigated after a complaint of rape filed by two Swedish women in August. He denies any wrongdoing.
WikiLeaks has not identified the source of the documents it obtained but suspicion has fallen on Bradley Manning, a US Army intelligence analyst who is currently in military custody.
Manning was arrested in May following the release by WikiLeaks of video footage of a US Apache helicopter strike in Iraq in which civilians died and has been charged with delivering defence information to an unauthorised source.
(c) 2010 AFP