Julian Assange announced today that his secret-sharing organization WikiLeaks will take a temporary break from releasing new information in order to focus on fund-raising. WikiLeaks blames an “unlawful financial blockade” by Bank of America, Visa, MasterCard, PayPal, and Western Union for destroying 95 percent of its revenues by refusing to accept donations on behalf of the controversial whistle-blowing website. “WikiLeaks has published the biggest leaks in journalistic history,” the organization said in a statement today. “This has triggered aggressive retaliation from powerful groups.” Assange said that his project may not continue beyond the new year unless they figure out a way around the money problems.
“In order to ensure our future survival, WikiLeaks is now forced to temporarily suspend its publishing operations and aggressively fundraise in order to fight back against this blockade and its proponents,” the statement said, claiming that they have been “running on cash reserves for the past eleven months.” The group’s resources will now be focused on a new website where supporters can donate.
As for Assange, he remains under house arrest in England and could still be extradited to Sweden to face sexual-assault accusations. He claims no WikiLeaks donations have ever gone toward his own legal fund.
WikiLeaks’ money woes brings end to leak of secrets [Telegraph UK]