WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has denied claims that he obtained hacked Democratic emails through his ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President-elect Donald Trump.
In an interview with Fox News on Tuesday, Assange said even outgoing President Barack Obama knows that WikiLeaks is not related to Russia or the Trump camp, especially when it comes to Washington’s claims that Moscow meddled in the recent presidential vote.
“He [Obama] is acting like a lawyer. If you look at most of his statements he doesn't say ... WikiLeaks obtained its information from Russia, worked with Russia,” said Assange, who has taken refuge at the Ecuadorian embassy in London.
The run-up to the November 8 face-off between Trump and his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton saw the two candidates attacking each other over a series of confidential emails that were mainly published by WikiLeaks.
The hacked emails mostly belonged to the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Clinton’s top aide John Podesta.
Trump said that the emails showed Clinton’s corruption, proving that she was unfit to lead the country. Clinton, on the other hand, accused Trump of getting help from Moscow to win the election.
The emails, coupled with Clinton’s own email fiasco, have been blamed by her supporters as the main reasons behind the former secretary of state’s defeat.
Democrats and the Obama administration have been blaming the hacks on Russia, but the Kremlin has categorically denied the claim.
Assange said Tuesday that even a “14-year-old kid” could hack Podesta’s emails, mainly because “his password was the word ‘password’.”
He denounced a joint report by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, which was published on December 29 and confirmed Obama’s claims against Moscow.
“On the top [of the report], there is a disclaimer, saying … there is no guarantee that any of this information is accurate,” Assange said.
He also made it clear that his website would have “absolutely” published embarrassing information about Trump if he was given any.
Assange blasted Democrats for the “stupid maneuver” of blaming WikiLeaks for their defeat.
“It’s the same reason why they lost the election, which is instead of focusing on substance, they focused on other things [like] this attempt to say how outrageous it is that the American public received true information before an election," he said. "The public doesn’t buy that. They want as much true information as possible.”