Wikileaks intends to publish the remaining 15,000 Afghan War Logs documents within a month, the founder of the whistle-blowing website has said.
Julian Assange told reporters in Stockholm on Saturday that Wikileaks would again work with established media groups over the release the remaining documents; however he declined to name them.
The Pentagon had earlier warned that release of the remaining documents could potentially be more damaging to security and put more lives at risk than the 76,000 secret files that have already been placed in the public domain by Wikileaks
Assange batted away fears by saying his organisation would “proceed cautiously and safely with this material’and would not be ‘threatened by the Pentagon or any other group”.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Assange said: ‘For the Pentagon to be making threatening demands for censorship of a press organisation is a cause for concern, not just for the press but for the Pentagon itself.”
Assange told the AP that Wikileaks was halfway through a thorough review of the remaining documents and information which endangered ‘innocent parties who are under reasonable threat” would be redacted.
“It should be approximately two weeks before that process is complete,” Assange said. “There will then be a journalistic review, so you’re talking two weeks to a month.”
Assange’s appearance in Stockholm came just days after he was criticised by press freedom charity Reporters Without Borders for the “incredible irresponsibility” of his organisation for the way it placed the secret military documents online.
In a full-blooded attack, the charity said that in addition to putting lives in danger, publication of the Afghan war documents risked future use of the internet as a viable source of information.
In an open letter to Assange, Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Jean-FranÃ§ois Julliard and its representative in Washington DC, Clothilde Le Coz, said the indiscriminate publication of the classified reports reflected “a real problem of methodology and, therefore, of credibility”.
The charity also accused Assange of “imprudence”, endangering his own sources and leaving those that risk their lives to provide information more exposed to reprisals.
The letter called on Wikileaks to provide detailed explanation of its actions and not to repeat its mistakes.
“Journalistic work involves the selection of information,” the letter stated.
“The argument with which you defend yourself, namely that Wikileaks is not made up of journalists, is not convincing.
“Wikileaks is an information outlet and, as such, is subject to the same rules of publishing responsibility as any other media.”
WikiLeaks responded on Twitter dismissing the charity as “Reporters San Fact-checking” and accusing it of concocting “some idiot statement, based on a bunch of quotes we never made”.