Edward Snowden`s exposé `tip of the iceberg`: Assange
Melbourne: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who has been holed up in the Ecuadorean embassy for a year, has claimed that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden is expected to reveal much more information about the US surveillance programme and till now what all had been exposed was just a `bird`s-eye perspective`.
Assange has claimed to have helped Snowden escape Hong Kong and claim for an asylum in Ecuador. He believes that `fine details` to the leaks are necessary to have lasting political impact, The Age reports.
According to the report, Assange said that the initial revelations were at the high level and there is a need to go down to the level of countries, organisations and individuals, so that the particular countries can see that they have been specifically targeted or caught up in the NSA`s dragnet surveillance.
Snowden who has been on a run from the US extradition for having leaked classified data about US-led `snooping programme` which collected users` web data and phone records for reasons of national security, is currently in Moscow`s Sheremetyevo Airport`s transit area.
While Russia and Hong Kong deny having `facilitated` the `fugitive`s` escape, Assange has strongly supported Snowden`s initiative and has claimed to have helped him escape from Hong Kong.
Assange said that detailed disclosures would help people better understand the pervasive nature of US telecommunications and internet surveillance.
However, Assange has declined commenting upon whether he or his WikiLeaks team has any access to the classified data and said that he cannot make any statements as it depends on the negotiations with the states.
Ecuador said that said it would renounce US trade benefits rather than have them used as `blackmail` to discourage it from granting Snowden political asylum.
Meanwhile, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said that his government would `almost certainly` grant Snowden asylum if he applied adding that political asylum is an international human rights institution to protect the persecuted.
Assange said that he did not expect Julia Gillard`s removal as prime minister to make it any more likely the Australian government would intervene to help resolve his circumstances.
Obama, on the other hand, has refused to engage in diplomatic `wheeling and dealing` over Snowden`s issue and expects the countries, as part of the international community, to respect and follow the international law, the report added.
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