Assange calls Wikileaks defection reports false
Lima (Peru): WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange
described as nonsense reports of defections from his
organisation and said his group helped inspire the Occupy Wall
Addressing a meeting of the Inter American Press
Association in Peru yesterday via Internet video hookup from
Britain, Assange said WikiLeaks` biggest problem is the ban on
processing contributions by credit card companies and PayPal.
"We have not cut any staff," he said, calling it "an
exception for most of the newspaper world."
Though asked for specifics, he did not say how many
people WikiLeaks has on staff or offer details about its
"We have been pleasantly in a strong enough financial
position to survive entirely on our cash reserves for the past
eleven months," Assange said.
He said WikiLeaks expects to prevail in legal action it
has taken in the European Union against corporations that
blocked payments last year after the online secrets-spilling
organisation facilitated the release of tens of thousands of
US diplomatic cables and sensitive documents from the Afghan
and Iraq conflicts.
He said the burgeoning Occupy Wall Street movement,
which blames corporate greed for the global financial crisis,
"is in part inspired by our activities" and claimed "community
support and media support for WikiLeaks has never been
On Saturday, the 40-year-old Australian spoke to
protesters in London during one of scores of global Occupy
Wall Street rallies, calling the international banking system
a "recipient of corrupt money."
As for allegations WikiLeaks may be splintering or
weakening, Assange said reports that circulated last year
about 12 people leaving the organisation were "absolute
He said WikiLeak`s sole defection was a German
spokesperson he did not name. He was clearly referring to
Daniel Domscheit-Berg, who Assange said he "suspended."
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