Anger as WikiLeaks releases all US cables
London: After a series of blunders, WikiLeaks today dumped its entire archive of 251,287 unfiltered and unedited secret US diplomatic cables online, drawing an angry response from its media collaborators.
The whistle-blower website made the controversial decision after losing control of the documents which exposed and possibly endangered confidential diplomatic sources.
WikiLeaks supporters posted the entire encrypted archive on the Internet late last year.
The group today said on its Twitter site that all 251,287 cables had been published in a searchable format.
Four of WikiLeaks` media partners — the Guardian, the New York Times, German news magazine Der Spiegel and Spanish daily El Pais — quickly deplored the move and distanced themselves from the site, saying the decision to publish was taken by WikliLeaks` founder Julian Assange alone.
In a joint statement, the four publications said they "deplore the decision of WikiLeaks to publish the unredacted state department cables, which may put sources at risk".
"Our previous dealings with WikiLeaks were on the clear basis that we would only publish cables which had been subjected to a thorough joint editing and clearance process.
We will continue to defend our previous collaborative publishing endeavour.
"We cannot defend the needless publication of the complete data – indeed, we are united in condemning it.
WikliLeaks` move comes amid a row between Wikileaks and the Guardian newspaper over who was behind the earlier release of thousands of unredacted cables.
David Leigh, the investigative editor of the Guardian newspaper had published the password to unlock the archive in his book "Inside WikiLeaks: Julian Assange`s War on Secrecy".
Among the newly released documents were thousands from countries with which the US has difficult relationships, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran and Venezuela.
WikiLeaks said in a tweet it was "shining a light on 45 years of US `diplomacy`, it is time to open the archives forever."
WikiLeaks is also encouraging its followers around the world to read the articles and share significant findings. But the search database soon became overloaded and unavailable, the BBC reported.
Meanwhile, US State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said WikiLeaks had informed Washington in advance of the document releases, but ignored US appeals that making them public could endanger lives and put US national security at risk.
"WikiLeaks did advise us of the impending release of information and of its intention to continue to release classified documents.
"We have made clear our views and concerns about illegally disclosed classified information and the continuing risk to individuals and national security that such releases cause," Nuland was quoted as saying by CNN.
"WikiLeaks has, however, ignored our requests not to release or disseminate any U.S. documents it may possess and has continued its well-established pattern of irresponsible, reckless, and frankly dangerous actions. We are not cooperating with them," she said.