`Assange potential Nobel candidate`

Assange should be helped and even could be given Nobel Prize, Russia said.

Moscow: The detained founder of the WikiLeaks whistle blowing website Julian Assange should be helped and could even be put forward for a Nobel Prize, a Kremlin source was quoted as saying Wednesday.

"Social and non-governmental organisations need to think how to help him," a source in the Kremlin administration was quoted as telling Russian news agencies.

"Perhaps he can be put forward as a laureate for the Nobel Prize," added the source, who was not named, in apparent reference to the annual peace award.

The remarks may have been made with a degree of irony and Russia has so far played down the release of the US diplomatic cables and predicted they will have no major effect in its relations with the United States.
However no further quotes or explanation from the source, who was quoted by all of Russia`s main news agencies in a simultaneous dispatch, were forthcoming.

Assange was refused bail Tuesday by a British judge over alleged sex crimes in Sweden after saying he would fight an extradition request by Swedish authorities.

Bureau report

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