Nobel Prize could protect WikiLeaks founder - Kremlin source

A demonstrator wears a mask depicting the face of the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange (AFP Photo / Carl de Souza)
Non-governmental organizations should consider nominating Julian Assange for a Nobel Prize, a source in the Russian presidential administration has said.

Public and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) “should think of how to help” the founder of the whistleblowing website WikiLeaks, the source said on Tuesday, as reported by Interfax news agency.

Later in the day, Russian president's press secretary said that the statement was a joke, but she did not disclose the source.

British police arrested Assange on Monday after he decided not to hide from international prosecution on Swedish sexual assault charges. Many believe the accusations are politically motivated.

The WikiLeaks website released over 250,000 cables from US embassies and consulates around the world in late November. Assange also sent secret US diplomatic documents to leading international media.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has said the documents “show all the cynicism of US foreign policy.” However, the exposed diplomatic cables will not affect relations between Moscow and Washington, he added.

In a recent interview with CNN’s Larry King, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin described the cables concerning Moscow and the work of the Russian leadership as “arrogant” and “unethical.”

Media also quoted a Russian diplomatic source as saying that the documents published by WikiLeaks “disclosed the lack of confidentiality of American diplomacy.”