Wikileaks halts whistle-blowing as money dries up
24th Oct 2011 | 13:35
Financial blockade works
Wikileaks has stopped publishing confidential government files in order to focus on fund-raising after the US banks put a "financial blockade" on the organisation.
The focus on dosh over documents is intended to be a temporary measure, with the organisation describing the action as a "fight for its survival".
Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange, told reporters, "If Wikileaks does not find a way to remove this blockade, we will simply not be able to continue by the turn of the new year. If we don't knock down the blockade, we simply will not be able to continue."
That's the same thing twice
Several companies, including Visa, MasterCard, PayPal and the Western Union, have stopped Wikileaks from accepting donations from members of the public on its website, an action that Wikileaks describes as "unlawful" and says cost it "tens of millions of pounds".
A statement from Wikileaks explains, "In order to ensure our future survival, WikiLeaks is now forced to temporarily suspend its publishing operations and aggressively fundraise in order to fight back against this blockade and its proponents.
"The blockade is outside of any accountable, public process. It is without democratic oversight or transparency."
"The blockade has cost the organization tens of millions of pounds in lost donations at a time of unprecedented operational costs resulting from publishing alliances in over 50 countries, and their inevitable counter-attacks.
"Our scarce resources now must focus on fighting the unlawful banking blockade."
It's not the first time that Wikileaks has had a financial crisis - in February 2010, the site also shut down due to funding problems, although it found a solution that allowed it to start back up again fairly quickly.
From The Guardian