WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange sees no reason to celebrate the reelection of US President Barack Obama. The US aggressively pursued and “persecuted” the whistleblower site under a Democratic administration, he explained.
“Obama seems to be a nice man, and that is precisely the problem,” the 41-year-old told AFP, speaking from his room in London’s Ecuadorian embassy.
“It’s better to have a sheep in wolf’s clothing than a wolf in sheep’s clothing,” he said. “All of the activities against WikiLeaks by the United States have occurred under an Obama administration.”
Assange was equally critical of the Republican, saying it “has not been an effective restraining force on government excesses over the last four years.”
“There is no reason to believe that will change – in fact, the Republicans will push the administration into ever greater excesses,” he added.
The WikiLeaks founder sounded hoarse, but refused to comment on his health. Last month, Ecuador said it had requested a meeting with British officials to discuss claims that Assange was losing weight and suffering vision problems.
Assange claimed asylum in the embassy in June to escape extradition to Sweden for questioning over sex crimes allegations. He denies the charges, and believes that if extradited he would then be sent to the US, which regards him as an enemy of the state, where he would face prosecution and possibly the death penalty.
WikiLeaks angered Washington in 2010 by publishing hundreds of thousands of classified US documents on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as diplomatic cables from US embassies around the world. Washington retaliated by forcing companies to cut off WikiLeaks’ sources of funding.