Friday, December 24, 2010

Assange hi-tech terrorist: Biden

MADRID: Wikileaks founder Julian Assange pushed back today after US Vice President Joe Biden blasted him as a dangerous ‘hi-tech terrorist’.

The 39-year-old Australian also told the Spanish daily El Pais that he was in ‘a condition of high-tech arrest’ although he was released on bail by a British court last week while he fights extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning over allegations of sex crimes.

Asked whether he thought Assange was a hi-tech terrorist or a whistleblower akin to those who released the Pentagon Papers — a series of top-secret documents revealing US military policy in Vietnam — Biden said Sunday: “I would argue that it’s closer to being hi-tech terrorist.” And he said the US Justice Department was mulling how to take legal action against the Australian. But Assange responded by noting that ‘terrorism is defined as the use of violence for political purposes’.

“Biden’s administration continues to take offense at our organisation and the press with a violent or political objective, so who are the terrorists?” he said. Assange has enraged Washington by obtaining a cache of some 250,000 US diplomatic cables and slowly releasing the documents through his whistleblowing website.

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