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Wikileaks releases trove of secret US cables

Whistleblowing website publishes 1.7 million US documents from 1973 to 1976, including many written by Henry Kissinger.

Last Modified: 08 Apr 2013 09:30
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The files, which include communications from former US officials, are also available on US national archives databases [WikiLeaks]

Whistleblowing website WikiLeaks has published more than 1.7 million US diplomatic and intelligence documents from the 1970s, founder Julian Assange has revealed. 

The release on Monday, also known as the "Public Library of US Diplomacy" or "Plus D", classified and declassified documents from US diplomatic history. 

The new records, dating from 1973 to 1976, include many communications which were sent by or to former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger and have also been dubbed as "The Kissinger cables".

"The Kissinger Cables are part of today's launch of the WikiLeaks Public Library of US Diplomacy (PlusD), which holds the world's largest searchable collection of United States confidential, or formerly confidential, diplomatic communications," the organisation said in a press release.

"As of its launch on April 8, 2013, it holds 2 million records comprising approximately 1 billion words."

The website also said that the searchable cables cover a variety of diplomatic communication include cables, intelligence reports and congressional correspondence.

'Geopolitical material'

Assange, who has sought refuge at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London to avoid extradition for sex charges, said that the records highlighted the "vast range and scope" of US influence around the world.

"The collection covers US involvements in, and diplomatic or intelligence reporting on, every country on Earth. It is the single most significant body of geopolitical material ever published," said Assange.

However, the files have not been leaked to WikiLeaks, and are available to view in US national archives databases. 

The diplomatic cables suggested that former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi may have been the "main negotiator" in a arms deal with a Swedish company in the 1970s. 

Gandhi was not a political figure at the time, but was employed by Saab-Scandia because of his access to Indira Gandhi, his mother who was also prime minister at the time. 

Assange founded the WikiLeaks website that enraged Washington by releasing  cables and war logs relating to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in one of the biggest security breach in US history.

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