Assange vows WikiLeaks to stay strong despite new blow
ELLINGHAM: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said the site will stay strong despite another blow to its funding and the publication Sunday of new details of the sex crime allegations against him.
The Australian began his third full day under "mansion arrest" at a friend's house while he fights extradition to Sweden, vowing that the whistleblowing website would continue to publish more secre US diplomatic cables.
Assange on Saturday denounced Bank of America, the largest US bank, for becoming the latest institution to halt financial transactions for Wikileaks after MasterCard, PayPal, Visa Europe and others.
The bank said its decision was "based upon our reasonable belief that WikiLeaks may be engaged in activities that are, among other things, inconsistent with our internal policies for processing payments."
"It's a new type of business McCarthyism in the US to deprive this organisation of the funds that it needs to survive, to deprive me personally of the funds that my lawyers need to protect me against extradition to the US or to Sweden," Assange told AFP.
The term was coined to describe the anti-communist pursuits of former US senator Joseph McCarthy from the late 1940s to the 1950s.
Assange is staying at Ellingham Hall, the mansion in eastern England of journalist friend Vaughan Smith, as part of the conditions of bail, which he was granted by London's High Court on Thursday.
He must also report daily to a nearby police station and wear an electronic tag.
Several newspapers published lurid new details of the allegations of sexual assault against two women, over which Swedish prosecutors want to question him. The 39year-old denies the charges.
The Guardian newspaperwhich has cooperated with WikiLeaks on the publication of the US documents-and the Mail on Sunday both reported that the two women with whom he had sex in Sweden had gone to police after he refused to take an HIV test. Assange hit out at Swedish handling of the case, accusing authorities there of leaking fresh details about the case that even he and his defence lawyers have not had access to. -Afp
BEIJING: A shopper passes an art display in a The Village shopping mall in Beijing. China's gross domestic product will exceed 37 trillion yuan in 2010, a top government think tank predicted, as Beijing looks to overtake Japan as the world's second-largest economy for the full year. -Ap