Rights groups urge WikiLeaks to redact Afghan names: Report
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Last Updated: Tuesday, August 10, 2010, 15:49
Washington: Human rights groups have urged WikiLeaks to redact names of Afghans helping American forces from thousands of leaked US military documents, leading to a charged retort from the website's founder, the Wall Street Journal said on Tuesday.

"We have seen the negative, sometimes deadly ramifications for those Afghans identified as working for or sympathising with international forces," said a letter to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, accoring to the Journal, citing a person close to the exchange.

"We strongly urge your volunteers and staff to analyze all documents to ensure that those containing identifying information are taken down or redacted," said the letter from Amnesty International, Campaign for Innocent Victims in Conflict, Open Society Institute, Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission and International Crisis Group.

The message prompted Assange to question what the groups were themselves doing to examine the 70,000 classified documents on Afghanistan, which were published by WikiLeaks in late July, and whether they would be willing to help with the redaction process, the daily said.

The files contained a string of damaging claims, and included the names of some Afghan informants, leading to claims that the leaks have endangered lives.

Amnesty suggested they may be able to provide some resources to analyse the documents and some 15,000 other files that WikiLeaks is planning to release, and that Assange and the rights groups discuss the issue on a conference call.

"I'm very busy and have no time to deal with people who prefer to do nothing but cover their asses," Assange was reported to have replied.

"If Amnesty does nothing I shall issue a press release highlighting its refusal," he said, according to the Journal.


First Published: Tuesday, August 10, 2010, 15:49

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