WIKILEAKS has released a new set of classified US government documents regarding detainee policies over the past decade.
The whistleblowing website tonight released five restricted files from the US Department of Defense, including the standard operating procedure manual for Camp Delta, Guantanamo Bay.
Over the next month, the website will publish more than 100 classified documents covering operating procedures at detention camps in Iraq and Cuba.
The internal documents cover detainee policies in Iraq’s notorious Abu Ghraib and Camp Bucca as well as interrogation manuals, a statement on the Wikileaks website said.
One document, from 2005, reportedly covers the “disappearing” of detainees into the custody of other US government agencies while keeping their names out of US military records.
Another one from 2008, says Wikileaks, reveals a formal policy of eliminating the requirement to record interrogation sessions.
Earlier today, Britain was formally asked to guarantee Wikileaks founder Julian Assange safe passage to a hospital in London if required with officials at his Ecuador Embassy bolt-hole worried about his physical and mental health.
In the latest complex issue to befall the British and Ecuador governments with the 41-year-old Australian, Ecuador Vice Foreign Minister Marco Albuja Martinez said the situation was now becoming a serious issue of human rights.
“Assange has grown noticeably thinner and we are very concerned about his health,” Mr Martinez said yesterday.
“If he falls ill we will have to choose between two alternatives – to treat Assange at the embassy or hospitalise him.”
To do the latter he would have to leave his sanctuary where he enjoys political asylum from British authorities who are armed with an arrest warrant.
Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino told reporters in Quito today he had requested a meeting with his British counterpart William Hague.
Patino said he wanted to discuss Assange’s worsening health following more than four months in the embassy where he is sheltering to avoid prosecution.
Ecuador said it had asked the British government for written assurances that Assange, who has been granted asylum by Quito, will not be arrested in the event of hospitalisation.
“As a result of the government of Britain’s not giving safe passage, Julian Assange’s health most certainly is beginning to be jeopardised and this is very serious,” Patino said in an earlier radio interview.
“We had hoped that the British government would defend and respect human rights and international law,” said Patino, adding that he had learned that Assange is suffering from problems with his vision.
“I hope that we will not have cause to regret a serious situation there,” Patino said.
The Wikileaks founder has been at the embassy since June after a British court ruled he should be extradited to Sweden to face serious sex assault allegations. Assange has denied the claims which he says were trumped up so as to extradite him to the US where he faces prosecution for publicly releasing hundreds of thousands of sensitive diplomatic and military cables.
He has been complaining about his deteriorating health for a couple of weeks now.
Police have been stationed about the Ecuador embassy in fashionable Kensington around the clock since June at a cost of AUD$2 million including at one stage more than 40officers or more than $17,000 on a normal day.
British Secretary of State William Hague last month admitted the issue was at a deadlock.
Meanwhile, fashion designer Dame Vivienne Westwood visited Assange yesterday wearing a T-Shirt made famous by the Anonymous protest group “I am Julian Assange”. She has been a long supporter of him but it was the first visit she has made.