OPINION

Wikileaks Slams Group Behind Panama Papers for Censorship

171114 ackerman wikileaks tease c6gaiq
171114 ackerman wikileaks tease c6gaiq

by The News American

This week the International Consortium of Investigative (ICIJ) Journalists finally released a searchable database for some of the Panama Papers financial documents. This follows serious criticism the ICIJ received from transparency groups for thus far releasing only a tiny fraction of their more than 11 million documents. According to the privacy group Cryptome, only .002% of the huge trove of documents have been released. Wikileaks has said the ICIJ’s failure to release all the documents constitutes “censorship” and has called for all documents held by the ICIJ to be released.

Speaking to RT about the Panama Papers Julian Assange said, “This is a big leak. But this is a small leak. Only 200 documents have leaked, and the rest have been privatised by a particular consortium in Washington, D.C.”

 

Despite this, many media outlets are portraying the searchable database release as though all 11 million documents have been released.

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Yet, in paragraph 7 of this Washington Post article we learn this searchable database actually contains “just a fraction of the material in the Panama papers; it excludes emails, financial transactions, scanned passports, and other raw documents that make up the bulk of the leak.”

The ICIJ itself says, “ICIJ is not publishing the totality of the leak, and it is not disclosing raw documents or personal information en masse.”

Wikileaks has criticized the ICIJ’s handling of the Panama Papers leak since it started making headlines last month. back in April Wikileaks drew attention to the fact the US-based ICIJ was funded largely by very wealthy US-based foundations.

 

So far nearly all the stories published from Panama Papers documents have excluded powerful individuals in the West, this despite the UK and US having second and third most intermediaries (individuals and firms) listed in Panama Papers. This has caused some to speculate the ICIJ may be shielding powerful individuals and companies in the west through cherry-picked document release. Since ICIJ is not releasing all the documents, we may never know.

 

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