News / Asia

White House Urges WikiLeaks to Not Publish More Secrets

A magnifying glass held in front of a computer screen, displaying an Afghan War Diary on the Wikileaks website, 26 July 2010
A magnifying glass held in front of a computer screen, displaying an Afghan War Diary on the Wikileaks website, 26 July 2010

The White House is urging the website WikiLeaks to not publish any more classified documents related to the Afghan war, saying it is important that no more damage be done to U.S. national security.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told NBC television Friday that all the administration can do is implore whoever has the documents to not post them.

He said a Taliban spokesman in the region stated that the Taliban is already going through the tens of thousands of documents that have already been posted to find the names of people who cooperated with international and American forces in Afghanistan.

Gibbs said the Taliban has warned that it knows "how to punish those people."

Thursday, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, said WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and his source "might already have on their hands the blood of a young soldier or that of an Afghan family."

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates described the documents that were posted as a "mountain of raw data" that did not shed new light on U.S. policy in Afghanistan.  He added, however, that the material could aid the enemy on the battlefield.

In a news conference in London on Monday, the WikiLeaks founder said the website has held back some 15,000 files from the approximate 96,000 documents it received in the leak.  He said those documents are being reviewed, and that some will be redacted and released.  

In a separate development, the U.S. military says an American soldier suspected of leaking military secrets to WikiLeaks has been moved from Kuwait to a military jail in Virginia.

Army Private First Class Bradley Manning was flown to Quantico Marine Base to await trial for leaking the top-secret information.

He was arrested in June for allegedly passing on to WikiLeaks a classified video of a 2007 helicopter strike in Iraq that killed two Iraqis who were on assignment for the Reuters news agency.  

Manning has also come under suspicion after the latest release of documents on WikiLeaks.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.

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