Wikileaks: US warns allies on potential diplomatic leak

BBC News

The US has briefed a number of foreign governments, including the UK, about the possible release of diplomatic files by whistleblower site Wikileaks.

Wikileaks has previously released documents relating to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Reports say Turkey, Israel, Denmark and Norway have also been warned to expect potential embarrassment from the leaks.

The top US military commander Adm Mike Mullen said the release of diplomatic cables was “extremely dangerous” and could put lives at risk.

Wikileaks has said the US authorities are afraid of being held to account.

It has not confirmed exactly when the documents will be made public.

The website, founded by Julian Assange, said earlier this week that the release would be nearly seven times larger than the nearly 400,000 Pentagon documents related to the Iraq war it published in October.

Analysts say the US and its allies have the potential to be embarrassed by the publication of candid assessments of foreign governments by its officials.

State department spokesman PJ Crowley warned on Wednesday that the release could weaken trust in the US as a diplomatic partner.

“When this confidence is betrayed and ends up on the front pages of newspapers or lead stories on television or radio, it has an impact,” he said.

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