WikiLeaks filed a criminal complaint against the Obama administration ahead of today’s arrival of the American delegation in Sweden alleging unlawful seizure of Julian Assange’s suitcase after the 2010 leaks of thousands of classified U.S. intelligence documents.
President Obama flies to Stockholm later today for a pre-G-20 meeting with Sweden’s prime minister, an event honoring Raoul Wallenberg, and a dinner with Nordic leaders.
WikiLeaks called today’s action “the first of four criminal complaints to be filed in different jurisdictions by WikiLeaks during the month of September against unlawful interference in its journalistic activities.”
“Swedish authorities have the opportunity to demonstrate that no one, including state officials, is above the law,” said publisher Assange.
The document-leaking site said the complaint filed with Swedish police “details a number of matters not previously made public and which WikiLeaks decided to withhold until the conclusion of the court martial of PFC Chelsea Manning.”
“The property seized included evidence of a war crime perpetrated by US forces in Afganistan in which more than sixty women and children were killed, known as the Garani massacre. The filing follows the revelation of unlawful FBI and US intelligence activities against WikiLeaks in Europe that have been forced onto the public record through a Parliamentary inquiry in Iceland and the Manning court martial,” WikiLeaks continued.
“The 186-page affidavit now made public details ongoing and illegal attempts by US authorities to interfere with WikiLeaks’ publishing and journalistic activities. Attacks such as those that WikiLeaks has endured have become a concerning trend, as exemplified by the recent abuse of the UK Terrorism Act to seize electronic devices and other materials belonging to those working on the Edward Snowden US mass surveillance revelations.”
Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald’s partner, David Miranda, was detained at the airport for nine hours by British authorities last month. In court, the UK charged that Miranda was carrying 58,000 classified intelligence documents and information that could expose the identity of British intelligence agents. The Guardian, which was paying for Miranda’s trip and aware that he was being a courier, said the government made a number of “unsubstantiated” claims and charged that they are “trying to justify and exploit this dismaying blurring of terrorism and journalism.”
Assange said “now is the time for everyone to take a stand to put an end to Obama’s war against national security journalism – at home and abroad.”
“This filing, recent court victories, and our successful intervention in the case of Edward Snowden, represent the continuing reorientation of WikiLeaks from legal defense to legal attack,” he said.