Funding Crisis May Force Closure of WikiLeaks
25 October 2011 at 10:41 am
|Jullian Assange says Wikileaks has had to suspend its publication operations due to funds being blocked. Flickr Image: Some rights reserved by acidpolly|
A funding crisis has forced whistle blowing website WikiLeaks to suspend its publication operations.
Appearing in London, founder Julian Assange said the website would shut unless it could raise about $3.3 million in funds.
The funding crisis occurred after banking giants such as Visa, MasterCard, PayPal and Western Union stopped funneling donations to the site, making it extremely difficult for the public to make donations.
Assange told yesterday’s press conference that an "arbitrary and unlawful financial blockade has been imposed by Bank of America, Visa, MasterCard, PayPal and Western Union.”
"The attack has destroyed 95 per cent of our revenue," he said.
He said WikiLeaks planned on launching legal action against the companies that from December last year blocked donations to the site.
Until now, WikiLeaks has been running on its savings. Donations can be made via Swiss bank accounts but the process is cumbersome.
"We are throwing all our own resources into this stand against the blockade because it will mean the elimination of WikiLeaks and potentially the elimination of any other group that gets on the wrong side of these unaccountable US finance companies," he said.
"If we do not get the funds flowing again that is the end of WikiLeaks – that is the end."
He said WikiLeaks hoped to launch a new operating system in November which ensures a higher level of security to those wanting to leak information.