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Assange fails in bid to suppress own memoirs

Jerome Taylor The Independent 09/22/2011 23:59
Assange fails in bid to suppress own memoirs - Julian Assange - WikiLeaks - Book

The autobiography of Julian Assange is published today despite attempts by the WikiLeaks founder to suppress it after a bitter row with its publisher.

In the manuscript, excerpts of which appear exclusively in today's Independent, Mr Assange addresses for the first time the events that forced him into a costly extradition battle over allegations that he sexually abused two women during a stay in Stockholm last summer.

It appears despite his decision this year to withdraw his co-operation. After protracted efforts to secure either his consent to publication or the return of an advance worth hundreds of thousands of pounds, his publisher, Canongate, has decided to go ahead. The book offers a deeply personal insight into a man who, in less than a year, went from being an obscure former hacker to one of the world's most recognisable faces thanks to his organisation's explosive revelations. A whole chapter is devoted to explaining his side of the Swedish story.

"I have kept my own counsel about the matter until now," he writes. "It will be difficult to keep anger out of this account, owing to the sheer level of malice and opportunism that has driven the case against me."

According to the book Mr Assange had been warned that the US government wanted to set him up. He admits to sleeping with two women but says their allegations that some of the encounters were not consensual are either part of a conspiracy or motivated by his failure to return their calls.