US to WikiLeaks: New Leak Risks 'Countless' Lives

State Dept. urges Assange to hold diplomatic cables
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Nov 28, 2010 8:50 AM CST
Harold Koh, the U.S. State Department legal adviser gestures as he speaks during of private security service providers conference in Geneva, Switzerland, Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2010.   (AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus)
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(Newser) – The Obama administration is urging WikiLeaks not to follow through on the expected release of secret diplomatic cables, saying the move would threaten “the lives of countless innocent individuals,” damage counterterrorism work, and rattle relations with US allies, the AP reports. A State Department lawyer calls the release illegal in a letter to WikiLeaks’ founder Julian Assange and his lawyer.

The release of the letter is “highly unusual” and reveals the White House’s “grave concerns” about the matter, the AP notes. The letter adds that the US won’t work with WikiLeaks to remove material from the 250,000 cables that could hurt intelligence-gathering. The letter was prompted by a British request for information on who the documents put at risk, the State Department said.

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