Among the most recent newsworthy WikiLeaks revelations was a claim that drug maker Pfizer Inc. hired investigators to dig up dirt on Nigeria’s former attorney general in a bid to stop action over a 1996 drug study, and that the U.S. considered taking military action against an arms-laden Ukrainian ship after it was hijacked by Somali pirates two years ago.
The U.S. Department of Justice, meanwhile is considering whether to charge those behind the leaks under the espionage act or other laws, while U.S. diplomats, deeply embarrassed by WikiLeaks‘ disclosures, have struggled to contain the fallout.
“The deplorable WikiLeaks disclosures put innocent lives at risk, and damage U.S. national security interests,” U.S. Ambassador to London Louis Susman wrote in an editorial Friday in The Guardian newspaper. “There is nothing brave about sabotaging the peaceful relations between nations on which our common security depends.”
A former WikiLeaks spokesman plans to launch a rival website Monday called Openleaks that will help anonymous sources deliver sensitive material to public attention. Daniel Domscheit-Berg made the claim in a documentary by Swedish broadcaster SVT airing Sunday but obtained in advance by the AP.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange remained in a U.K. jail ahead of a Dec. 14 hearing where he plans to fight Sweden’s request to extradite him to face sex crimes allegations.
Kristen Gelineau in Sydney, Michael Corder in The Hague and Louise Nordstrom in Stockholm contributed to this report.
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