Published On: Sat, Jun 20th, 2015

WikiLeaks publishes more than half a million leaked diplomatic cables from Saudi Arabia


WikiLeaks is in the process of publishing more than half a million cables and other documents from the Saudi Foreign Ministry that contain secret communications from various Saudi Embassies around the world, the transparency website said on Friday.

In a cable sent on August 14, 2008 and marked as classified and extremely urgent, the Saudi Foreign Ministry warned the Saudi embassy in Washington that dozens of students from Saudi Arabia and other Gulf nations visited the Israeli embassy in the US capital as part of an international leadership program, Report Ynet news.

“They listened to briefings by embassy employees, asked questions, and had pictures taken, ” the message stated. The Saudi Foreign Ministry asked the embassy in the US to quickly prepare a report on the matter, says Ynet news.

The Saudi Foreign Ministry used Twitter on Friday night to warn citizens not to go online to read the documents, saying the information could be false and “harmful to the motherland”. The statement urged Saudis: “Do not help the motherland’s enemies attain their goals.”

WikiLeaks said in a statement that it has already posted roughly 70, 000 files. Most of them appear to be in Arabic. The publication includes “Top Secret” reports from other Saudi State institutions.

Julian Assange, WikiLeaks publisher, said: “The Saudi Cables lift the lid on a increasingly erratic and secretive dictatorship that has not only celebrated its 100th beheading this year, but which has also become a menace to its neighbours and itself.”

In the statment Wikileaks says: “Last year Saudi became the largest arms importer in the world, eclipsing China, India and the combined countries of Western Europe. The Kingdom has since the 1960s played a major role in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) and dominates the global Islamic charity market.

“Since late March 2015 the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been involved in a war in neighboring Yemen. The Saudi Foreign Ministry in May 2015 admitted to a breach of its computer networks. Responsibility for the breach was attributed to a group calling itself the Yemeni Cyber Army. The group subsequently released a number of valuable “sample” document sets from the breach on file-sharing sites, which then fell under censorship attacks.”

Wikileaks also three years since Wikileaks founder Julian Assange sought refuge in Ecuador’s embassy in London to avoid extradition to Sweden over alleged sex crimes.

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