Assange blames right-wing US pols for funding block that cost Wikileaks at least $50 million

Julian Assange today accused "hard-right" American lawmakers of pressuring credit card companies to block more than $50 million of donations to Wikileaks, which published thousands of secret U.S. diplomatic cables and other leaked documents. The European Commission today announced it was unlikely Visa Europe, MasterCard Europe and American Express Co violated EU anti-trust rules by blocking the processing of donations to WikiLeaks.

Snip from Reuters:

Assange said MasterCard had acknowledged in filings with the European Commission it had spoken to the staffs of Joseph Lieberman, an independent U.S. senator who chairs the Senate Homeland Security Committee, and Republican Representative Peter King, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee.

This was evidence, Assange said, that "hard-right U.S. politicians were directly behind the extrajudicial banking blockade against WikiLeaks".

He said the action had blocked 95 percent of WikiLeaks' donations from Europe and cost it at least $50 million.

In related news, you need $50 million to operate a website that publishes leaked government documents.

Read the rest at Reuters.